How do we proceed from here? - The Malaysian InsiderIf Malaysians are to have respect for the country's institutions, they must have respect for the men and women who staff these institutions. The minute we harbour doubts about the character and integrity of an individual leading an organisation, it only stands to reason that our view of that organisation will be down in the dumps as well.
This premise holds true for the police and the Election Commission.
Yesterday the standing of Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar's took a big hit. He was accused by Justice Datuk VT Singham of malfeasance in the death in police custody of A. Kugan.
We should expect nothing less than integrity, honesty and a great respect for the rule of law from any policeman. These are minimum standards. How much more should we expect from the IGP?
He sets the tone for the whole force.
Can we be certain that he will not turn a blind eye to criminal acts by his men as he seemed to have done those years ago? Death in police custody is a big concern, and there seems to finally be some momentum on the government's part to tackle this issue.
Does Khalid have the standing to clean up the force and set an exemplary standard of behaviour? The High Court's judgment does not make for comforting reading.
Of even less comfort was Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim's disclosure that the Election Commission used food dye, instead of indelible ink at the May 5th general election.
At what point does our rage against the EC subside? The day the chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof and his deputy Datuk Wan Ahmad Wan Omar are shown the door?
The duo have compromised the public standing of this institution by their partisan comments and unwillingness to accept that there is much public skepticism about their handling of the elections.
They have been so reluctant to clean up the electoral rolls and everytime some critic brought up questions about the possibility of electoral fraud, they proudly trumpeted the use of indelible ink as proof of the EC's commitment to free and fair elections.
Well, now we know all about the indelible ink. And to think that Malaysians had to wait nearly two months after the elections to find out the truth about the "ink".
What more are they hiding for the electorate? Is electoral reform possible with the two compromised leaders of the EC still calling the shots?
Perhaps a better question is this: what happens to an institution or organisation when the top is infected with disease, malaise, poor judgement,etc?