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KULAIJAYA: Malaysia’s success in reducing its crime index has made it Southeast Asia’s safest and most peaceful country.
It has also gained international recognition with the Global Peace Index 2011, ranking it 19th in its list of 153 countries, up from the 26th position in 2009.
It noted that Malaysia’s overall crime index had decreased by 11 per cent.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said this figure had exceeded the targeted reduction rate of five per cent.
“The increase in security and peace has benefited the country, leading to a higher confidence level among foreign investors.
“Foreign investments increased by RM33 billion last year, exceeding the RM29 billion achieved before the world economic crunch in 2007,” Muhyiddin said at the launch of the Johor-level “safe city” programme here yesterday.
He congratulated the police and local authorities on their joint efforts in reducing the crime rate and the supporting roles of the People’s Volunteer Corps (Rela) and voluntary policemen.
He said the community played an important role in helping in crime prevention through initiatives such as Rakan Cop, community policing and volunteer patrol schemes.
“The responsibility to reduce crime does not lie solely with the government. The people must also play a role in maintaining public and individual safety to prevent them from becoming crime victims.”
He said New York City was among the cities that had benefited from a smart partnership between the community and police. This led to its annual crime rate dropping from 6,363 cases per 100,000 people in 1990 to 3,099 in 2000.
Fifteen local authorities in Johor had received RM26.1 million until the end of last year to implement the “safe city” programme.
The money was part of the RM218 million from the Federal Government since 2010 for high-impact measures.
Of that amount, RM26.1 million had been spent on infrastructure to combat crime at hot spots. These included 108 closed-circuit television monitors, controlled by local authorities and district police headquarters; rail barriers to separate 13km of pedestrian walkways from vehicles; and 281 safety mirrors.
Muhyiddin also said street crime in Johor decreased by 14.4 per cent last year compared with 2010, while serious crime recorded a dip of 15.5 per cent during the same period.
Present were Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman and Deputy Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Lajim Ukin.