Polls betting uncovered

Deputy IGP promises stern action following info on people taking bets that could influence March 8 voting

KUCHING: The police here have received information about certain quarters who are taking bets on the parliamentary election and they will do everything possible to bring the law to bear down on the culprits.

Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Ismail Omar confirmed yesterday that the state police had received the news the night before and was currently on the case.

I have directed the State Commissioner of Police (DCP Mohmad Salleh) and his men to investigate it thoroughly and to take stern action against the people involved. This is very wrong in the eyes of the law.

He told reporters this at the state police headquarters here yesterday after officiating at the deployment of some 1,500 officers to 26 polling stations throughout the state.

It was a very wrong thing to do, especially during a critical moment like an election as it could somewhat induce voters to vote or not to vote for certain candidates, he said.

Ismail said his personnel were trying to get the details on how the bets were made; the channels used; takers mode of communication; and the size of the syndicate involved.

At the moment, its too premature to say anything, but rest assured that the police are on the case, he said, adding that those caught could either be charged under the election law or gambling law.

Earlier, heavy rain did not deter Ismail and the state police top guns from seeing off the officers to the polling stations.

A total of 67 senior officers and 1,557 of lower ranks were deployed to maintain order during the election.

In his speech, Ismail reminded them to maintain the image of the force by being fair and discharge their duties with full commitment and integrity.

He said this was a crucial time that required the police to carry out their duties well in order to facilitate the election process and it was here that past courses and seminars on how to handle the election came in handy.

It was during such times also that all officers needed to be well-versed in the election process and the relevant law so they could carry out their duties well, he said.

Be prepared for the unexpected. Anything can happen during an election but I am confident that the training you had will serve you well in overcoming any problems that might come up during times like this, he said.

He reminded them that it was during an election all eyes would be on the force and therefore officers should behave well so as not to be criticised.

This is the time for us to show that the Sarawak police contingent is made up of competent and credible officers, he said.

Also present were Mohmad, Deputy State Commissioner of Police SAC I Datuk Abdul Rahman Hussin; Deputy Director II of the Narcotics Criminal Investigation Department SAC I, Datuk Mohd Shukri Dahlan; and other senior officers.


Why is every senior police personel from the commisioner down, a malay? Sure does not look multi-racial.

What’s wrong with ‘inducing’ voters who to cast their ballots for? Isn’t it campaigning? Afterall, the gov’t has absolute monopoly of the media for their inducement, aka propoganda, promising lots of “goodies” in return. What a bunch of BS!!