Ex-IGPs support new preventive law

Abdul Rahim Noor and Hanif Omar say there is a need for a new preventive law to tackle hardcore criminals but also want the new legislation to protect human rights. 

P Ramani, FMT

Two former top cops today agreed that the repeal of the Emergency Ordinance (EO) had rendered police somewhat ineffective in dealing with crime.

Hence, ex-IGPs Abdul Rahim Noor and Hanif Omar supported Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s move to introduce a similar preventive law to replace the EO.

“Maybe the word Emergency Ordinance is a bit out-dated as it was used during the communist era but we need a preventive law to tackle hardcore criminals,” said Rahim.

Yesterday, Bernama reported Zahid Hamidi as saying that police have now been rendered powerless to act against criminals after the EO was repealed.

He also said that following the abolishment, about 2,600 detainees at the Simpang Renggam Detention Centre in Johor were released and many of them returned to a life of crime.

Therefore, the minister said that the government needed a new legislation similar to EO to tackle criminal activities.

Rahim, who was the IGP in the 90s, however, disagreed on the notion that the police were completely powerless as the force is still equipped with the Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) to deal with criminals.

“But the Attorney-General’s Chambers should draft a new legislation that will strike a balance between tackling criminals and protecting human rights,” said Rahim.

Hanif, on the other hand, said that the repeal of EO had rendered the police with less investigating powers.

Although Section 113 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) provides investigating powers to the police, Hanif said that the legislation was not enough to deal with violent criminals.

“So we will have to wait for the new law to be introduced and see how effectively it can be used against organized crime,” said Hanif.