We expect total professionalism from police
There should be a new era of peace, security and trust between the police and the people after this historic 13th general election.
Suaram expects the Malaysian police to conduct itself in the most professional manner following the outcome of the general election.
The Malaysian police has been trained and tested since the days of the Emergency which started in 1948. They have fought insurgents in the jungle as well as in the urban areas for more than thirty years.
The methods used by the Malaysian police have often been found to be excessive but they have proven that they can nip any altercation very swiftly when they want to.
This was exhibited during the Kesas Highway demonstration in 2000 when the police could break up a 100,000 people demonstration in minutes, albeit using brutal means.
Having said that, the Malaysian police have been found to be a tad tardy at various points in our history.
During the May 13 “riots” after the general election in 1969, the pogrom continued until July 1969 when the security forces only then truly demonstrated their professionalism.
Similarly, when ethnic Indians were the victims of racial violence at Kampung Medan in 2001, the thugs were allowed to go on the rampage from March 8 to 13 when it should have been nipped in the bud as soon as it happened since Kampung Medan is such a small enclave in Petaling Jaya.
The Malaysian Special Branch prides itself with being one of the best in this part of the world but at times, such as the violent disruption of the Asia Pacific Conference on East Timor on Nov 9, 1996, the police arrived one whole hour late, long after the mob had done its dirty work.
We hope that such lapses in the professionalism of the Malaysian police will not occur again if there should be a need to keep order folloiwing the results of the 13th general election.
We look forward to a new era of peace, security and trust between the police and the people after this historic 13th general election.
Kua Kia Soong is the advisor to human rights watchdog Suaram