King is honorary top cop after Parliament passes amendments to Police Act

KUALA LUMPUR: Parliament passed several amendments to the Police Act 1967, including a new section that stipulates the Yang di-Pertuan Agong will be the Honorary Commissioner-in-Chief of the police force.

Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Shamsul Anuar Nasarah said that the amendments were made to recognise the role of the King as the Honorary Commissioner-in-Chief of the Police, as well as giving high recognition pertaining to the protocol matters of the police force.

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"This provision also recognises the position of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as the Supreme Head of the country as stated under Article 32 of the Constitution and the King's power to appoint the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) and the deputy IGP on the recommendation of the Police Force Commission after considering the advice of the Prime Minister as stated in Article 140(5) of constitution.

"However, in the police force, the power to administer (the police force) falls on the responsibility of the IGP as mentioned under Section 4 of the Police Act (Act 344)," he said while wrapping-up for his ministry in Parliament Thursday (March 21).

With the passing of the Act, it will see an amendment to Clause 4, which seeks to amend Section 21 of the Police Act, providing for the police to carry out escort duties on any public road.

The Act also stated that any person who obstructs, opposes or fails to comply with police instructions may be fined up to RM10,000 and jailed for up to two years, compared with the previous penalty of RM200 and two months’ jail.

It will also see an increase in the maximum fine from RM1,000 to RM2,000 for anyone who fails to comply with a police order to stop before reaching any barrier erected or placed by any police officer, stipulated under Section 26.

The amendments to Clause 6 involving changes to Section 66, stipulates that any employer who fails to re-employ a reserve police officer would be liable to a maximum fine of RM2,000 and one-year jail, compared with the existing RM1,000 and six months’ imprisonment.

It also provides that any police officer who fails to report for duty for 14 consecutive days without reasonable cause shall be deemed to have deserted the force, and be guilty of an offence under an amendment to Section 86.

The First Schedule to the Act also seeks to delete a reference to senior inspector as the position is no longer used in the ranks of the police force.

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