IGP calls 99pc of Malaysians obeying MCO ‘heroes’, warns of stiff penalties for stubborn violators

Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador speaks during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur April 6, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador speaks during a press conference in Kuala Lumpur April 6, 2020. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, April 6 — Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador commiserated today with the 99 per cent of Malaysians dutifully observing the movement control order (MCO) when some continue to flout it.

Describing the 99 per cent as heroes of the nation, Abdul Hamid expressed his gratitude while singling out the remaining one per cent for their continued recalcitrance.

He warned that severe punishment would befall those who continue to disregard the MCO.

“I sympathised with the 99 per cent of Malaysians who remained calm, isolating themselves at home and their seething anger against those who disrespect our officers. We must think of the 99 per cent.

“I would also like to congratulate the 99 per cent of Malaysians who remained calm and obeyed the MCO. PDRM sees them as heroes of the nation.

“To those who disobeyed as if it is a ‘macho’ thing to be able to evade arrest, I am telling you now, pride comes before a fall. Heavy punishment awaits, so think carefully,” he told a press conference in Bukit Aman here.

He also said it was never the police’s intention to detain people at “leisure” as the law was meant to protect the interests of the people at large and people still continued to flout them.

This comes after Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Yaakob revealed today that the authorities made 554 arrests nationwide yesterday for defying the MCO.

“This is not something we look forward to (arresting people). So you cannot blame us. It is not in our interest to compete who can arrest the most but that is the fact,” Abdul Hamid said.

According to Ismail Sabri, the reason for this high number could be the fact it was a weekend, and many took the opportunity to go out thinking it was a good idea to do so with not many people out and about.

Abdul Hamid also hoped the public would understand the duress faced by his officers as emotions throughout the country were running high.

“Each of their shifts at a roadblock is a full eight hours, not two or three. So please be considerate,” he said.

The MCO was first announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on the night of March 16, and came into effect on March 18.

On March 25, Muhyiddin announced the MCO would be extended for another fortnight and is set to expire on April 14.

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