KUALA LUMPUR: Manpower shortage is one of the major challenges faced by Bukit Aman in carrying out policing duties nationwide.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said there was a need to balance the increase in population with the number of police personnel.
The current number of 126,000 personnel to 27 million people, he said, falls far below the standards set by Interpol.
“We need more policemen to effectively carry out policing matters nationwide,” he said in an interview in conjunction with the 208th police day celebrations yesterday.
However, he said, the shortage had never posed a problem for the force to carry out its duties.
Khalid said the police force was allowed an increase of 4,000 personnel per year by the Government.
He said if the number of personnel loss annually, including those who retire, is taken into consideration, the force would need to recruit between 6,000 and 7,000 new personnel every year.
The force was also burdened with a lack of logistical equipment such as vehicles while personnel faced housing problems, forcing many to rent.
“But I feel the Government understands our position and problems, and I believe they will be solved in stages,” he said.
As for external challenges, Khalid said one of them was maintaining border security, particularly along the Malaysia-Thailand border as well as the Sabah and Sarawak border with Kalimantan.
“These areas pose challenges as the hilly terrains make it quite difficult to control the movement of people in and out of the country.
On crime, he said that under the Government Transformation Programme, police had been tasked with reducing the crime index by five percent each year.
“Our target is to reduce the index by five percent each year until 2020,” he said, adding that the main issues involving crime are syndicated crimes, cross border crimes, foreigners involved in crime, human trafficking and social crime.