KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 20 — Datuk Abdul Hamid Bador was not told to go on leave but had instead requested a rest before taking up new duties at the Prime Minister’s Department, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said today.
The top policeman was replying to media reports on the former senior police intelligence officer’s abrupt transfer to a different federal agency, albeit one seen as an advancement as he is be part of a new security division and will report directly to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
“Datuk Abdul Hamid was never told to go on leave but his break was his own request to rest,” Khalid said in a statement.
He added that Abdul Hamid’s transfer to the Security and Transnational (SIS) as its deputy director was as recognition for his capability and experience in handling security matters.
Khalid played down the significance of such transfers, saying they were not “out of the ordinary” and that Abdul Hamid was aware the move was an offer.
“Previously, Tan Sri Bakri Omar, Tan Sri Zaman Khan, Datuk Seri Zulkifli Md Noor and I myself have been placed in several government agencies on basis of urgent need,” he said, naming several past senior police officers.
Khalid also said yesterday’s closed door duty-handover ceremony was also not an unusual event, especially for the Special Branch (SB) that has “never sought publicity”.
Abdul Hamid, who was the SB’s deputy director, had confirmed his transfer when contacted by Malay Mail Online yesterday, but said he was in the dark on the reasons for his abrupt work shift.
“No… they just told me to go to JPM, so I go to JPM lah,” he said then, using the Malay abbreviation for the Prime Minister’s Department (PMD).
“No reason given and I just received the letter yesterday… earlier today, there was a ceremony to hand over my duty.”
He added that he would take up his new duties at the Prime Minister’s Department on September 2, as he was currently on leave from work.
Rumours have been floating on the Internet since then, with one saying Abdul Hamid is scheduled to hold a press conference after Friday prayers tomorrow.
Abdul Hamid could not be reached for further comment and his mobile phone appears to be switched off.
Abdul Hamid’s transfer is the latest change to take place within the SB following last month’s shock Cabinet reshuffle, which saw Datuk Seri Mohamad Fuzi Harun replacing Datuk Seri Akhil Bulat as SB director.
The new SB deputy director is Datuk Mohd Haniff Hanudin; he had previously headed a unit called E4 that deals with the political extremist threat.