Bar Council reiterates govt to establish IPCMC

17 Aug 2014 / 11:32 H.

    KUALA LUMPUR: The Bar Council reiterates the government to establish the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) in light of the deaths in police custody that continue unabated.
    The president of the Malaysian Bar Christopher Leong said the Royal Commission had identified too many deaths in custody, the failure of the police to investigate and the authorities to hold inquests into these deaths were key concerns raised by members of the public and NGOs and international organisations.
    According to information received from the Government in Parliament on 26 June 2013, there was a total of 231 deaths in police custody between the year 2000 and May 2013.
    "That is approximately one death in custody in every three weeks time, during that period," said Christopher.
    One of the most notorious deaths in custody cases was that of 32-year-old Dhamendran Narayanasamy, who was found dead at the Kuala Lumpur police contingent headquarters on 21 May 2013, his eleventh day in police remand.
    PDRM initially claimed that Dhamendran had died from breathing difficulties. However, following a post-mortem examination conducted at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital on 22 May, the pathologist’s full post-mortem report documented 52 injuries on Dhamendran’s body.
    Following the recommendation of the Royal Commission, the Government initially took steps towards setting up the IPCMC, with overwhelming support from civil society. Its implementation came to a halt in 2006 after the PDRM strongly objected to it.
    The Government then proposed to establish the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) as an alternative to the IPCMC, claiming that the EAIC would be able to provide the necessary oversight.
    The EAIC’s mission is to strengthen the service delivery system with integrity amongst the Malaysian enforcement agencies through the management of complaints and investigations in a transparent, bold, dutiful and professional manner.
    The EAIC Act, providing for its establishment, was passed by the Dewan Rakyat on 1 July 2009, four years after the IPCMC was first mooted. It took another 19 months for the EAIC to officially begin operating on 1 April 2011.

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