IGP: Don’t take advantage of police’s trust by travelling unnecessarily, pretending to buy essentials

Malaysian Armed Forces and police personnel man a roadblock amid heavy traffic along the LDP in Petaling Jaya on March 25, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May
Malaysian Armed Forces and police personnel man a roadblock amid heavy traffic along the LDP in Petaling Jaya on March 25, 2020. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — Despite the absence of a clear guideline limiting one’s movement during the movement control order, Inspector General of Polie Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador urged Malaysians not take advantage of this loophole and travel unnecessarily.

Abdul Hamid, in explaining the difficulties faced by police in making sure that everyone adhered to the shutdown, said the society must also play its role by not exploiting the benefit of the doubt afforded to them by the police.

“For example, there were few incidents yesterday where when we asked the driver where they were going, they answered to buy essentials.

“But when we ask their address, during a roadblock in Sungai Buloh, they say their address is in Shah Alam.

“So what is the need for the person to travel from Shah Alam to Sungai Buloh just to buy food?” he questioned.

Abdul Hamid said the police would initially offer advice to those moving around with such excuses, but depending on the severity, he said officers were also authorised to instruct them to return home immediately if there is no valid reason.

“They will be detained and then chased back. I know the term ‘chase’ might seem crude, but this is to make sure they do not take advantage of the situation during this time.

“It is not as though we have the data of all 32 million Malaysians at each police roadblock, where the moment they move we know they are breaking the law.

“It does not need to reach that level, all we ask for is their understanding,” he said during RTM’s Selamat Pagi Malaysia programme this morning.

Abdul Hamid was invited on to the show in conjunction with the 213th Police Day celebrations today.

Malaysia today enters the eighth day of a two-week long movement control order to contain and break the chain of infection of the Covid-19 virus.

The latest numbers locally show 17 deaths from the virus, with 1,518 positive Covid-19 cases, and so far 159 who have recovered.

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