KUALA LUMPUR: Saying the image of the police has taken a serious battering in recent times, the National Patriots Association (Patriot) called on the police leadership to seriously address the public trust deficit.
Patriot vice-president Zulkifli Mohamed, a retired police officer, said the top police leadership should implement all the 125 proposals made by the Royal Commission to Enhance the Operations and Management of the Police in 2005 to regain public trust.
He said apart from the setting up of an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), the police leadership needed to also bring improvements in the level of professionalism and integrity, training, technical and logistical support, legal protection, the welfare of personnel and good leadership.
Zulkifli said the recent furore arising from the “online gambling study tour to Turkey” by the inspector-general of police and several senior officers only testified to the fact that the public was watching the police force closely.
“Patriot expresses its deep concern over the incident and views this as a sign of a rather unwelcoming development in the police force.
“The once respected image of the police, which was reputed to be one of the best in the region, has now been tainted and public confidence in the force has been shaken.
“The call for the hastening of the establishment of the proposed IPCMC may reflect this sentiment.
“Despite their strong reservations over the establishment of IPCMC, it appears that there have been no positive step taken by the police top management to enhance the level of professionalism and integrity of the force to justify this reservation.”
Patriot is an NGO consisting of retired officers attached to the armed forces and the police.
Zulkifli said the establishment of IPCMC was just one of the 125 proposals made by the royal commission, yet the public was keen to push for this single proposal.
“This may have something to do with their level of confidence in the police force and they cannot be blamed for this.
“Patriot agrees and welcomes the establishment of an IPCMC. But it also believes that it should only be carried out after or along with the implementation of the other 124 proposals.
“The image of the police has taken a serious battering following a few recent incidents that cast doubt over the integrity of its senior officers in particular and the force as a whole.
“Patriot urges the police to seriously address this issue in order for it to regain public confidence.”