Nanyang Sian Pau’s report with the headline “Hanif, Produce Proof — Musa’s comment on allegation that 40% of senior police officers corrupt” is the only newspaper to give some prominence to the serious allegation by the country’s longest-serving and most famous former Inspector General of Police, Tun Hanif Omar that 40% of senior police officers could be arrested for corruption without further investigations strictly on the basis of their lifestyles.
It has taken the IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan more than a week to respond to Hanif’s serious allegation, and it was a most anaemic, perfunctory and unimpressive response totally lacking in credibility — that the public should lodge reports if they have information on corrupt cops and that he would take action to investigate to determine the truth.
The failure of the Prime Minister, the Cabinet and IGP to respond seriously to the unprecedented allegation of police corruption by a pillar of the establishment like Tun Hanif in his Sunday Star column on August 12 that 40% of senior police officers could be arrested for corruption without further investigations strictly on the basis of their lifestyles is eloquent testimony that Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s anti-corruption campaign has completely run out of steam and is a dismal failure.
What Hanif exposed was not about individual cases of corruption but systemic corruption of the police force and the public service.
If “40% of the senior officers could be arrested without further investigations — strictly on the basis of their lifestyles”, we are talking about a staggering figure of 1,400 out of the 3,502 senior police officers from the rank of Assistant Superintendent to Inspector-General of Police.
When in the past three years there had not been a single case of arrest of a senior police officer out of the 1,400 who could be arrested for corruption without further investigations, it speaks of a rotten system of national integrity which will see Malaysia’s international corruption perception index on a downward plunge.
In countries serious about eradication of corruption and not just playing lip-service with a National Integrity Plan which does nothing to check corruption, a revelation made by the country’s most famous former IGP about such high-level rot and corruption would have merited being placed on the top agenda of the Cabinet.
The Malaysian Cabinet meeting last Wednesday, however, had no time for the serious allegation by Hanif as it was too preoccupied by a 24-year-old rapper Wee Meng Chee and his Negarakuku rap and the demands of Umno Ministers to demonise, criminalize and crush the undergraduate with the whole might of the state!
The entire Cabinet should apologise to the country for disregarding Hanif’s serious and unprecedented allegation last Wednesday, demonstrating its utter lack of seriousness in fighting corruption and upholding national integrity.
It should make amends at tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting by giving top priority to Hanif’s serious and unprecedented allegation, and come out with a bold decision and action plan to salvage the failed anti-corruption campaign and restore public confidence in the integrity of the Abdullah administration.