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Should the police be in business?

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C4 refers to the Inspector General of Police Abdul Hamid Bador’s recent statement after having discovered 67 associations registered under the name of the Royal Malaysian Police.

Moreover, those associations have no whatsoever connection with the police. There were also allegations of such organisations selling police representative cards to private individuals and which in turn misused them to collect donations and avoid summons.

C4 is extremely concerned with this discovery and the rise in the business connections within the police force itself. Many companies, joint ventures and partnerships were established through their cooperative society, Koperasi Polis Diraja Malaysia Berhad (KPD).

KPD was established in April 1928 to help reduce the financial burden of the police and the staff in the police department. While KPD is registered as a cooperative society, it is in fact a conglomerate venturing into various profit-making businesses covering hospitality, travelling and construction, among other things, as shown below:

The subsidiaries owned by KPD and KOP Mantap, as per their website:

Company Name

  1. Auxiliary Force Sdn. Bhd.
  2. KOP Security Agency Sdn. Bhd.
  3. KOP Tradtech Sdn. Bhd.
  4. KOP Educators & Consultant Sdn. Bhd.
  5. KOP Travel & Tours (M) Sdn. Bhd.
  6. KOP Logistics & Distribution Sdn. Bhd.
  7. KOP Aviation Sdn. Bhd.
  8. KOP Agrolink Sdn. Bhd.
  9. KOP Logistics & Distribution Sdn. Bhd.

KOP Mantap is a listed company incorporated in Malaysia on January 1993. It is a wholly owned investment arm of KPD. It also has major and/or partial shares in the following companies:

Company name

  1. KOP Petroleum Sdn Bhd
  2. KOP Property Development Sdn Bhd
  3. KOP Computer Sdn Bhd
  4. KOP Perunding Risiko (M) Sdn Bhd
  5. KOP Fire Engineering Sdn Bhd
  6. KOP Bintang Sdn Bhd
  7. KOP Property Maintenance Sdn Bhd
  8. KOP Construction Services (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd
  9. KOP Trading Sdn Bhd
  10. KOP Plantantion Sdn Bhd
  11. KOP Printing and Stationery Sdn Bhd
  12. KOP Dahlia Hotel Sdn Bhd
  13. KOP Limousine Services Sdn Bhd
  14. KOP Nusantara Hotel Sdn Bhd
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KOP Mantap also formed joint ventures or partnerships with many private companies such as Eita Resources Bhd, G3 Global Bhd and Protasco Development Sdn Bhd.

Notably, the former inspector-general, Fuzi Harun, and former deputy inspector-general Noor Rashid Ibrahim were the former board members of KPD while they were still working in the police force. This raises the question as to any conflict of interest with them holding positions in both the law enforcement agency as well as the chairman and vice-chairman of a business conglomerate.

It is also interesting to note that both former police chiefs Khalid Abu Bakar and Fuzi were the directors of SME Ordnance Sdn Bhd and PBLT Sdn Bhd during their tenure in the police force.

Both PBLT and SME Ordnance had allegations of monetary losses. In fact, the Ministry of Finance had to bear RM80m in consultation fees for PBLT’s postponed projects. Complaints were filed by the employees of SME Ordnance for not receiving their remuneration.

All these business joint ventures and partnerships with private entities and/or individuals create a huge grey area and raise a question – whether the police force would be business-minded – or remain ethical, as expected of every member of the police force.

The conflict of interest becomes inevitable when law enforcement agencies are involved in businesses. It creates opportunities for abuse of power and leads to corruption.

Thus, C4 hopes that Hamid Bador would look into this as part of the needed reforms to the police force.

C4 stands ready to engage and dialogue with the inspector-general on these concerns.

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Cynthia Gabriel is executive director of C4 Center.

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