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Malaysian police officers to use English with immediate effect, following Dr M's directive

KUALA LUMPUR — The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) will begin using English for daily briefings and operations from Monday (Aug 13), said Inspector-General of Police Mohamad Fuzi Harun.

Malaysian police officers to use English with immediate effect, following Dr M's directive

The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) will begin using English for daily briefings and operations from Monday (Aug 13).

KUALA LUMPUR — The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) will begin using English for daily briefings and operations from Monday (Aug 13), said police chief Mohamad Fuzi Harun.

Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad previously directed Mr Fuzi to enhance the force's command of English and bring it on a par with the rest of the world.

"Today is indeed a history for PDRM. This is a drastic step for us. We kickstarted our five-day course for all senior officers," he said at the Royal Malaysia Police College in Cheras after launching the professional communication course, which will cater to senior officers and district police heads first before being extended to lower-ranking officers.

“We need to ensure English proficiency at all levels. We will have 14 training centres nationwide. We want to make sure that the officers are able to write and speak well in English,” he added. 

“I was personally told by the prime minister that my men have to be good at the language.”

Mr Fuzi said that new recruits will also have to take the English language course, though those who did not excel in the language during school examinations can still apply to be officers.

“New intakes will have to go for intensive English classes. We will also have debate classes for them," he said.

“This is a new policy, but if they did not do well in their exams, they can still apply to be police officers. They will just have to attend our English classes. We will have English teachers from our department to teach newcomers.”

The police chief cautioned that his men have to be given time to be able to speak the language fluently.

He said the level of English within his department was at a moderate level as the moment.

“We will start using the language more frequently, but give us some time. Once we reach a certain level, they will conduct meetings and so on in English," he said.

“I think we are at the moderate level.”

Thirty high-ranking officers were at the police academy on Monday for the English course, which will end on Friday. It is free of charge for police personnel.

Mr Fuzi later said that he would have to seek a bigger budget next year to expand the classes throughout the country.

The previous Malaysian government had long called for more non-Malays to join the police force, with then deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi telling Parliament in 2016 that non-Malays make up only 5 per cent of the 133,212-strong force.

“It is the collective responsibility of all Malaysians, irrespective of race or background, to defend the nation,” he added. AGENCIES

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