Kit Siang to ex-IGPs: Speak up if there really is political interference in state CPO appointments

DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said a recent outburst by newly retired top cop Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador raises the question of whether Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin might have overridden the IGP in deciding state chief police officers. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said a recent outburst by newly retired top cop Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador raises the question of whether Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin might have overridden the IGP in deciding state chief police officers. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 4 — DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang wants all seven living ex-inspector generals of police (IGPs) and nine living former home ministers to address recent allegations of government interference in police appointments.

The Iskandar Puteri MP said a recent outburst by newly retired top cop Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador raises the question of whether Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin might have overridden the IGP in deciding state chief police officers (CPOs).

“There is now controversy whether the inspector-general of police has unfettered power to appoint state chief police officers (CPOs) and whether it is the Home Minister, Hamzah Zainudin, in his capacity as chairman of the Police Force Commission, who is politically interfering in the matter by usurping the powers and functions of the IGP on the appointment of the state CPOs.

“I call on all the seven living ex-IGPs to speak up whether they had faced political interference in appointing state CPOs. Hanif Omar, the longest-serving IGP, has spoken up. Let us hear from the other six living ex-IGPs.

“Also let the nine living ex-home ministers speak up whether as chairman of the Police Commission, they had interfered with the appointment of state CPOs or whether they had left it entirely to the discretion of the then IGP,” he said in a statement today.

The other six former IGPs are Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Mohd Noor (1994-1999), Tan Sri Norian Mai (1999-2003), Tan Sri Musa Hassan (2006-2010), Tan Sri Ismail Omar (2010-2013), Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar (2013-2017) and Tan Sri Mohd Fuzi Harun (2017-2019).

In addition, the nine living home ministers are Tun Musa Hitam (1981-1986), Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (1986-1999), Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi (1999-2004), Tan Sri Azmi Khalid (2004-2006), Tan Sri Mohd Radzi Sheikh Ahmad (2006-2008), Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar (2008-2009), Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein (2009-2013), Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (2013-2018), and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin (2018-2020).

Earlier today, news portal MalaysiaGazette reported former IGP Abdul Hamid as claiming that Hamzah wants to decide who leads the Special Branch Department (SB) allegedly for his own political interests.

Abdul Hamid also alleged that the home minister has meddled with some SB operations without going into further details.

During a press conference last Friday, Abdul Hamid reportedly said that Hamzah’s interference in police matters was unnecessary and blamed him for the emergence of different “camps” within the police force.

He added that Hamzah, in his capacity as the president of the Police Force Commission (PFC), insisted on deciding the transfers of police officers.

On the same day, during a closed-door event in Putrajaya to mark the appointment of Datuk Seri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani as the new IGP, Hamzah admitted that it was his voice in a viral audio clip discussing the appointment of police personnel to the force.

He added that he had done nothing wrong and that the one who had committed the offence was the person who had secretly recorded his conversations.

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