By Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary- General and MP for Petaling, Lim Kit Siang, on Friday, 18th Sept. 1981:
Call on Inspector-General of Police, to direct that swift action should be taken in all complaints against abuse of power by police personnel to ensure public confidence.
In a recent series of press interviews, the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Haniff Omar, has urged members of the public to come forward in cases of abuse of power by the police, and even offered protection to members of the public who fear reprisals for reporting cases of misuse of powers by policement.
These assurances by the Inspector-General of Police is most welcome although by itself, it would not go far in creating the climate of confidence where members of the public could confidently come forward to report cases of police abuse of powers.
This is because the public have not seen with their own eyes that the police are kept within tight check by the authorities concerned in ensuring that they are the guardians of the public and not the bullies and even persecutors of the public.
One way to create public confidence in the police is that there must be swift action in all complaints against abuse of power by police personnel.
I was in Pantai Remis a few days ago, and I was informed of a case of an abuse of power by a member of the Police Field Force, who seized the cassette player of a fisherman on 26th August 1981, and when the fisherman tried to retrieve the casset-player, the Police Field Force member lifted his sten-gun, threatening to gun him dowm.
A police report was lodged on the same day, Police Rpt Pantai Remis 1458/81, but although more than three weeks have passed, no action has yet been taken. It is such delay and indifference with regard to complaints against police abuse of power which discourage the public from coming forward to report against the police. I call on the Inspector-General of Police to look into this matter and direct that swift action be taken.