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PM -  suspend Noh Omar who provokes  a third firestorm of outrage in  six days with his  contempt for public opinion and human rights


Media  Statement

by Lim Kit Siang  

, Wednesday): Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi should suspend Deputy Internal Security Minister Noh Omar for provoking a third firestorm of outrage in six days with his contempt for public opinion and human rights, when he arrogantly told reporters in Parliament yesterday that foreigners can go back to their own country if they think the Malaysian police are “cruel”.


It  is  most shocking  that Noh Omar had taken a stance which dismissed the legitimate national and international outrage and anger at Malaysia’s police Abu Ghraib scandal highlighted by the naked ear-squat video clip, asserted a “sovereign right” for the police to be “cruel” in utter disregard of the issue about

police violation of prescribed laws and human rights standards and ignored nation-wide dismay that the Police Royal Commission Report and Recommendations to reform the police force into a world-class efficient and professional police service had so far come to nought.


The first firestorm of outrage hit the country after DAP MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok had shown the videoclip to  Ministers, MPs and the press in Parliament last Thursday.


The second firestorm of outrage was caused by the Deputy Inspector-General Police Datuk Seri Musa Hassan on Sunday when he  dropped a bombshell by exonerating the policewoman in the Petaling Jaya district headquarters video clip of a naked Chinese woman doing ear squats while in police custody and said:

“It is the perpetrator behind the video footage whom we are after and not the policewoman, who was carrying out a routine check.”


Musa’s exoneration was an open act of insurbordination and defiance of the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister who had publicly promised “no cover-up” of the investigations with the former extending a public apology to Chinese nationals who had been mistreated by the police or immigration.


Noh Omar raised the third firestorm, with his arrogant and contemptuous statement to foreigners to go back to their own country for protesting against police human rights violations, a day after his exculpation of the police from any wrongdoing on the ground that “everything was done following the rules”, viz, the Lock-up Rules 1933 and the Criminal Procedure Code.


After Noh Omar’s arrogant and contemptuous statement was shown on TV last night, I was swarmed with calls of outrage, demanding punitive action to be taken against him to salvage the image of the government and country.


The Prime Minister should direct Noh Omar to openly apologise and retract his arrogant and contemptuous statement, which not  only encouraged a culture of impunity among police personnel for their breaches of the law but also makes nonsense of his apology to Chinese nationals who had been mistreated, and suspend him as  deputy minister.


As reported by New Straits Times today, the Chinese Government  had lodged its formal protest and demanded punishment for those involved in the outrage.


NST said:


Beijing, Tues – China today broke its silence on the degrading treatment suffered by a female detainee in a police station, urging Malaysia to punish those responsible for the act and protect Chinese visitors.


It also lodged a formal protest over the incident, in which a naked woman was forced to perform squats in front of a female police officer…


Malaysia apologised in response to Beijing’s protest and promised to investigate the matter thoroughly.

"We require that the Malaysian side take effective measures," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao at a regular news briefing.

"On the one hand, to punish the perpetrators and find out the truth, and on the other hand to protect the personal safety and dignity of Chinese citizens in
Malaysia so as to prevent such incidents from recurring.

"The Chinese Foreign Ministry and embassy have expressed great concern and have made solemn representations to the Malaysian side on many occasions."


How many are the “many occasions” referred to by Liu Jianchao and what were the subject-matter of the “solemn representations”.


What is clear, however, is that the subject of protest is not about the video footage as Noh Omar and Musa  Hassan would want people to believe,  but the police mistreatment in stripping a woman detainee and forcing her to perform ear squats.



A Malay Mail report  today carried the headline ‘Stop bashing the police”.  I fully agree. There should not be any police-bashing as all Malaysians support an efficient, dedicated and professional world-class police force which is a  prerequisite for any modern and civilized society.


However, there can be no compromise with the ‘black sheep” in the police force or any sector of society. As Noh told Parliament last Thursday, few than 1% of the police personnel in the country are “bad”.


With a police personnel of some 100,000, this tiny minority of one per cent “black sheep” nonetheless come to a disturbing figure of about 1,000 rogue police personnel in the country, who can create havoc in the country if allowed to operate with impunity and immunity.


The 1% “black sheep” in the police force of some 1,000 rogue police personnel must be rooted out to protect the good name and work of the 99% police personnel of some 99,000 policemen and women in the country.


*  Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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