PM admits need to do more for public safety
KUALA LUMPUR, June 12 — More must be done to ensure Malaysians feel safe from crime, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today, two days after a minister in his Cabinet insisted that two recent violent incidents were not indicative of a rising crime rate.
The prime minister gave his assurance that the government was concerned with “all kinds of violence, including against women”, despite saying that the country’s general crime rate has dipped considerably.
“The general crime rate has fallen but more has to be done to ensure that the rakyat feels more secure,” he told a live Internet chat session on NST Live.
On Sunday, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein insisted that the country’s crime rate is not on the rise despite growing concern over public safety, saying that two recent violent crime cases were “isolated” incidents.
He added that blowing a few cases out of proportion would only create a perception that Malaysia was unsafe country, when official data showed otherwise.
“The numbers have not increased from the past. One or two cases... you show me one country where there is no kidnapping.
“Don’t exploit [the incidents] to make this something political,” he had told reporters, referring to Saturday’s assault and mugging of Bersih steering committee member Wong Chin Huat.
Wong was left bloodied after being attacked while jogging in Petaling Jaya, while teacher Teoh Soo Kim, 51, is fighting for her life after suffering severe head injuries during her abduction last Wednesday.
“Two cases do not affect the National Key Result Areas (NKRA) on crime,” the Umno vice-president stressed.
When asked how the annual reduction in crime was calculated, he said:
“It is calculated by international bodies. If people are already prejudiced, no point in me saying how it is calculated,” said the home minister.
He said the government had “promised” a reduction in street crime, and this did not include other types of crimes.
“When we started NKRA it was 50 hotspots for street crime. What we promised was street crime... (Now) other areas have to given attention.”