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‘Stop spying on us and start fighting crime’

 | July 3, 2012

Special Branch spent three times more resources spying on its citizens than it has on fighting crime, says PKR president Wan Azizah

PETALING JAYA: In 2010, Malaysia’s Special Branch, according to PKR, spent three times more resources spying on its citizens than it has fighting crime.

PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail revealed figures from the 2012 Budget, showing that the police produced 733,237 spy reports and security checks in 2010.

In comparison, the number of investigation papers under criminal investigation opened that year was 211,645.

“All in all, the police’s Special Branch produced 733,000 reports on its citizens, spying on roughly 4.3% of the adult population of Malaysia,” said Wan Azizah.

She expressed irony at this, hinting at the rising spate of crime in the country, especially where violence against women was concerned.

She said that instead of focusing on crime, the government chose to focus on statistics.

With the Special Branch in mind, Wan Azizah told Putrajaya: “Stop using the police to enforce a police state. Instead, let the police do their job of fighting crime.”

She suggested that the police re-direct 90% of its Special Branch activities towards fighting crime.

PKR central committee member Wong Chen said that the party was not undermining Special Branch’s intelligence role.

Instead, he asked that the Special Branch, which was formed during the Malayan Emergency to combat the communist terrorists, stop following politicians around.

“We’re not saying [that we want to] cut Special Branch’s budget and staff… [but] we have a crime wave… Stop spying on us and do some work [fight crime],” he said.

Recently, Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein blamed the alleged rise of crime on poor public perception.

In a Malay Mail report, he said that no country in the world had “zero crime”, adding that recent violent cases were merely isolated incidents.

Citing government reports, Hishammuddin said that overall crime had dropped since last year.


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