Tuesday, July 08, 2008

RELA - a means to avoid employing more public servants?

Why is the Malaysian government resorting to using RELA?, I wonder.

Today there are about 520,000 RELA membersThere are only 93,348 members of the police force (according to the PDRM website). Besides that Polis Diraja Malaysia terdiri daripada 93,348 orang pegawai dan anggota.

The simple answer, I believe is that it is far EASIER for the government NOT to get more public servants (with all the requisite social security protection, including pension/KWSP) and just get some volunteers, to whom they need to just pay some allowances here and there... and this is very wrong.

The number of police personnel is way too small -- and from what I know, the number of Immigration enforcement officers is even more pathetic. We have about 2.2 million documented migrant workers, and given the nature of our borders and our neighbours, we may have about 5 million undocumented migrants in the country at any one time.

The solution is not to be stingy with our money, and not spend to increase professional law enforcers. (I heard that one investigating officer in Kuala Lumpur every day has to deal with at least 30 new cases - that means taking statements from 30 complainants - and as such, the said investigation officer really would not have the time to investigate seriously any crime.)

I have heard stories from immigration enforcement officers who had gone on raids -- ending up running away by reason of too few in numbers.

We do have the police bantuan, the volunteer police, the rakan cop, ..... but why did the government not move in the direction of just increasing the volunteer police force...or maybe even the volunteer immigration enforcement officers...Why indeed?

Well, the RELA was never intended to be permanent - even as volunteers...

It was a stop-gap measure to overcome unemplooyment problems - by pulling them into RELA and handing out allowances and/or "bounties" for every successful capture.

It was also political - and we saw many politicians getting into the RELA -- why? 520,000 - therefore it is like them Puteris, Puteras, etc..

And many persons would love to get into uniform, and walk around playing 'police' and thief...

If they were to go and become volunteer police, volunteer army, volunteer immigration enforcement officers - then there will be serious training, serious discipline and most necessarily a serious chain of command. Oh, but many of the 520,000 would not have also qualified because in all these volunteer units, there is quality control. And yes, many of them politicians would also not have made it - for many it is really a 'political gimmick' - they are RELA only at certain times...

Many have called for the abolition of the RELA , and this include the Malaysian Bar(12,000 over members), ALIRAN (one of the oldest Human Rights organisation), SUARAM...aand many others

But the government is pretending to be deaf...

Earlier some years back, the handling and management of the Detention Centres were transferred to the experts, the Prison Department -- and now, they are transfering power to the RELA..

Now, they want to make RELA more powerful...

Just stop it --- and if we need more police and enforcement personnel, just employ more Public Servants (or government servants) - wish CUEPACS and the other unions will also come out against this move of trying to use "voluntary temporary government workers (who will not have any job security, social security benefits, pension/EPF, etc...) .

We have been criticizing private companies for doing this -- and alas the government of Malaysia is doing the same now.

JUST HIRE MORE GOVERNMENT SERVANTS (the correct term is Public Servants...)

Move to give Rela more powers

IN THE DEWAN RAKYAT PARLIAMENT, July 3 — The Home Ministry plans to upgrade the Rela voluntary corps and give its members more powers, Deputy Minister Datuk Chor Chee Heung told Dewan Rakyat today.

He was replying to Ding Kuong Hiing (BN-Sarikei) during Question time.

To a supplementary question by Fong Po Kuan (DAP-Batu Gajah), Chor said a special Bill on Rela was being drafted and would be tabled in Parliament soon to ensure its effectiveness and give its members more powers.

He also said the government did not have plans to raise the allowances of Rela members taking in the operation to round up illegal immigrants codenamed "Operasi Tegas" because the new rate was only approved in March last year.

On discipline, he said action had been taken against 9 members for abuse from last year until April 2008.

Rela, which was set up on Jan 11, 1972 to help preserve and maintain national security and peace, now has about 520,000 members.

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