The claim that the police force erects a “blue wall of silence” to shield its officers who had abused their powers is “preposterous”, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said today. – See more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/igp-denies-errant-cops-protected-by-blue-wall-of-silence#sthash.HjsCFhj2.dpuf
Thursday June 4, 2015 | 11:42 PM GMT+8
KUALA LUMPUR, June 4 — The claim that the police force erects a “blue wall of silence” to shield its officers who had abused their powers is “preposterous”, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim said today.
Khalid was responding to former Chief Justice of Malaysia Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah’s May 28 speech, where the latter was said to have alluded that the police condone “police brutality”.
“To charge that we practise the unwritten rule of the ‘blue wall in silence’ in protecting our own kind, is preposterous,” Khalid said in a statement today.
He pointed out that the police force had through its own initiative formed an internal Department of Integrity and Standard Compliance to strictly monitor “any form of misdemeanour or abuse of powers” among officers.
Even before this department was formed, the police force’s Disciplinary Branch had internally monitored the officers, he said.
Dzaiddin is best known as having headed the 2004 Royal Commission of Inquiry into Police Reform, which mooted the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC).
But the police force has resisted calls for the independent body to be set up.
Last week, Dzaiddin had in his speech pointed out that only two out of the 242 deaths in police custody during 2000 to 2014 were recorded as resulting from “police foul play”, stating: “The statistics simply do not add up”.
Having also previously served in the police force before joining the judiciary, Dzaiddin claimed there was a “blind eye towards police violence”, attributing the custodial deaths to alleged weak internal accountability and a police culture that purportedly treated rule of law indifferently and had a patent disregard of human rights.
But the IGP today responded by saying that Dzaiddin had judged the police force too harshly, noting that its training modules cover the basic understanding of human rights and constitutional rights.
Khalid said both the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) and the International Islamic University also provide lectures on human rights to the police force.
Suhakam had itself audited the police force’s training modules, which the University of Derby had also approved as worthy of accreditation, he said.
Responding directly to the “blind eye towards police violence” remark, Khalid also provided the statistics of 51 police custodial deaths recorded in the five-year period of 2010 to 2014.
The cause of death as verified by a pathologist of the 51 cases are predominantly medical conditions at 33, heart attack and suicide by hanging with eight cases each, HIV and police-linked at one each.
“We wish to state that for the year under review 2010-2014, a total of 51 cases of death in police custody were investigated. Out of the 51, 4 policemen were charged in court in the case involving the death of N. Dhamenderan (2013),” he said.
Dzaiddin’s speech was delivered at a public forum jointly organised by the Malaysian Bar and the National Human Rights Society (Hakam), which is titled “Rogue Cops: Workable Solutions — Police Accountability in Malaysia”.