by AFIQ AZIZ/ pic by RAZAK GHAZALI
THE government will equip enforcement personnel with body-mounted cameras as a way to mitigate corruption practices and misconduct in the administration.
Prime Minister (PM) Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (picture) said the initiative, which will be implemented soon, would involve the Royal Malaysian Customs Department, Immigration Department, as well as the Royal Malaysia Police.
He said the investment in the tools, which will be determined later, is also a way to assist the authority in the investigation process on any misconduct allegations.
“These officers will talk or do something while at work, so we want to know if they are doing the right thing, and how they behave.
There are accusations where officers have bullied or beaten up people.
“So, we want to know the truth,” Dr Mahathir said in a media conference after chairing the Special Cabinet Committee on Anti-Corruption meeting in Putrajaya yesterday.
Additionally, the federal government is also considering to add more enforcement personnel on the ground as the three agencies are severely understaffed.
According to the PM, at the moment, the administration is still studying whether it is possible to reallocate manpower to these agencies without having to incur more costs.
“We are finding ways, (so) maybe we can shift some of the already employed people to more important jobs as we cannot add anymore, considering that we do not have the money (to hire people),” he said.
Dr Mahathir noted that the agencies have requested for more recruits due to the lack of manpower, but the government is unable to do so due to financial constraints.
He added that the government had lost between RM3 billion and RM5 billion last year alone due to “leakages” at the country’s borders.
“We will give priority to certain equipment (including the camera) and agencies based on requirement,” he said.
More closed-circuit television cameras are expected to be installed at strategic locations or hotspots, including police lockups, said Dr Mahathir.