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In the limelight again

I read in disbelief the news about the alleged extortion and robbery staged by three MACC (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Council) officers at KLIA ( Kuala Lumpur International Airport). The trio apparently caught hold of a Singaporean money changer carrying a large amount of foreign currency and took some one million ringgit from him before letting him board a plane.

The three officers have been detained by the police after being identified by the money changer, and currently under a seven-day remand.

MACC has been in the news since last year with the investigation and apparent suicide of Teoh Beng Hock, the special officer to a DAP politician and that of a custom officer alleged of corruption, who died falling off another MACC premises. I thought that is the end of MACC’s woes but this latest spectacle is set to smear its image further in the eye of the public.

What have gone in their mind to carry out this blatant act? Besides greed and plain stupidity what else could we think of that made these officers choose to deeply embarrass their organisation and of course their families and loved ones as well.

Robbery is a pure illegal act but for officers in MACC which is an enforcement agency, robbing is a form of corruption as they abuse their authority to hold up a victim and then take his money!If found to be true, they should be charged on both counts: robbery and corruption (and by the way, who the heck is going to investigate the corruption part???)

I am terribly disappointed with these culprits if this allegation is true. For professional crooks to rob is understandable but for the very people who are supposed to safeguard the interests of the masses through law enforcement,is rather hard to swallow. I am sure MACC chief, Abu Kassim Mohamed is scratching his head at this latest development.

MACC Chief- Abu Kassim Mohamed

I really find it hard to believe that these officers stoop so low as to rob someone. I hope the police will investigate professionally. The many CCTVs at KLIA will show the footage of the unfolding caper and of course the taped recording of the alleged incident, already in police possession, should prove to be vital evidence.

If charged and brought to court, make sure their faces are not allowed to be hidden. They should be named and shamed to be a deterrent to others. This will be hard enough for them and act as part of the punishment. Though some smart Aleck will say they are “innocent till proven guilty”. Well,people are entitled to different opinion in this democratic country.

In instances like this, it would appear that moral and religious seminars/counseling aren’t enough for these officers. They are only good in form but certainly not in substance. Perhaps the government has to review their salary structure and standard of living to reign in their greed. Stringent recruiting of officers is necessary to screen applicants with character flaws and an internal control may need beefing up.

But haven’t we come across newspapers’ reports of policemen robbing foreign workers and army personnel robbing cybercafes? We have yet to see them charged in court. I would like to urge the police to conduct their criminal cases fairly without fear or favour.

Let us, as citizens and tax-payers, demand that the relevant Ministries study this concerning situation (white gangsterism) as part of their KPI (key performance indicator) and restore our confidence in enforcement agencies and uniformed personnel.

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