On the Beat | By Wong Chun Wai

More needs to be done to ensure public safety

authorities may say that Ong was at the wrong place at the wrong time, in
assuring us that it was an isolated case.

may be right but the public demand that shopping complex owners wake up and
provide better security for those who spend money at their premises.

this: It was reported on Nov 30 last year that a 47-year-old business executive
was brutally raped in her car after being tied up with her bra at a parking lot
in Damansara Uptown in the evening.

mother of two adult children, who works with an international cosmetics
company, was getting into her car when a man grabbed her from behind before
pulling out a knife and forcing her into the car.

man then drove to a secluded spot in the basement car park and robbed and raped

were more reports this year. On March 13, it was reported that a 15-year-old
policeman's daughter was allegedly raped by a friend in a woman's toilet at a
shopping complex in Ampang.

stunned Form Three student tried to put up a fight but was overpowered and
threatened by the man. The report said that it was the fourth rape involving
young girls in the city in recent weeks.

March 3, it was reported that a Form Four student who befriended several youths
at a shopping mall in Jalan Sultan Ismail was gang-raped at a rooftop parking

on May 30, a 19-year-old girl was molested and assaulted by a group of youths
at a shopping complex while having dinner with her boyfriend.

of the youths had grabbed her breasts after making lewd suggestions to her. Her
cries caught the attention of five security guards but instead of arresting the
youth, they advised her to let the culprit go.

incidents get reported because they are serious offences but cases of car
theft, mugging and burglary probably go unreported because victims do not want
to go through the hassle of making police reports when the chances of
recovering their goods are low.

the series of murder cases over the past few weeks are certainly of great
concern, if not alarming.

have a right to ask what the police are doing about the recent spate of crimes.

what are the owners of shopping complexes doing next to ensure public safety
beyond installing closed-circuit television and hiring security officers to go
on patrol regularly?

cameras need to be installed, not just at exit points to see whether we have
paid our parking fees, but also in lifts, at staircases and corridors.

areas need to be actively patrolled, particularly after 9pm, to give a better
sense of security to patrons of cinemas, food and beverage outlets.

women security guards should also be hired to patrol basement car parks.

surveillance, more security personnel and better lighting may mean higher costs
but they will go a long way in establishing the reputation of a shopping
complex among its customers.

of hotels and commercial buildings should also take similar precautions as
they, too, have huge basement car parks which are often poorly lit and

owners of hotels, commercial buildings and shopping complexes should also
consider hiring women guards who are prepared to accompany women to their cars
on request.

prevention often gets little attention from politicians but it has certainly
become a serious concern and they had better listen more attentively from now.

the classic case of Petaling Jaya Utara MP Chew Mei Fun. Aware that PJ has the
highest crime rate in Selangor, she launched a crime prevention campaign with
the help of the police.

on June 5, she ended up being a victim when burglars broke into her house and
stole two VCD players, her piggy bank and prizes for a charity event she was

total of 11,856 criminal cases were reported in PJ between January and August
last year. In KL, 9,312 cases were reported followed by Klang (8,325) and
Sentul (7,339).

are aware that there is a shortage of policemen in Malaysia. According to Chew,
there is only one policeman to every 3,000 residents in PJ whereas in most
cities in developed countries, the ratio is one officer to every 250 residents.

way to attract more people to join the police force is to ensure that they get
better salaries. With better perks, the force will attract better educated
people and also prevent them from succumbing to corruption.

will get to see a higher level of commitment in fighting crime instead of
seeing them stopping motorcyclists and lorry drivers for minor traffic offences,
arousing unnecessary suspicion on our part as to their intentions.

Singapore, youths have to either join the army or the police force under the
compulsory national service.

should seriously adopt this method if we want to boost the numbers of the
police force.

police have done well in fighting crime in this country but we can certainly
make their job easier if the Government and public do their bit as well.