Police in row with opposition MP over tweet

Police have accused opposition MP Rozaina Adam of posting a photo of a police officer on Twitter to intimidate security personnel.

Rozaina had accused the officer in question of obstructing her car on Wednesday night while she was heading to the parliament for a committee meeting.

The MDP said in a statement today that police officers had refused to remove a barricade set up near Dharumavantha School to allow Rozaina’s car through.

When one officer tried to let the car pass, another officer insisted that they must seek permission from a superior officer, the party said.

However, he removed the barricade after talking on a handheld transceiver.

Rozaina posted a tweet with a photo of the officer, her account of the incident, and an article from the parliamentary privileges law, urging police to “keep officers near barricades after teaching them the law.”

“If we are stopped on the way to Majlis, police will have the opportunity to stop us on the road until a vote is taken,” she argued.

However, police said a fire evacuation drill was ongoing at a nearby school at the time and said the officer had informed the senior officer in charge that a car will be passing through as the students were preparing to rush out.

Police criticized Rozaina for posting the photo of the officer, saying her intent was to intimidate, undermine public confidence in police, and bring the institution into disrepute.

The MDP said the police statement was symptomatic of the politicisation of the institution and its senior officers, whom it accused of bearing personal animosity towards opposition MPs.

The opposition party advised senior officers against exerting “political influence” over junior officers and against encouraging illegal actions.