The Home Ministry should review its current system of banishing bad elements, including hardcore criminals, to rural towns.Land Development Minister Dato Sri James Masing, in making the call, said such practice was now considered outdated as it failed to achieve its purpose.
“The system of dumping RBC (Registered Bad Characters) to rural towns is outdated … (and in view of this), the Home Affairs (Ministry) must think of (a) better solution apart from creating our own ‘Guatanamo Bay’ for Registered Bad Characters,” he said when contacted yesterday.
On Saturday, Kapit MP Alexander Nanta Linggi called on the government to review its policy on restricted residence (RR) on Kapit and Song districts.
“In the olden days perhaps the move to banish the bad elements to faraway places might be effective but not in this modern day society.
“With the advancement of information and communication technology (ICT) nowadays, it is very much easier for the RR to communicate to establish their so-called new ‘empire’ here.
“There are actively broadening their ‘network’ in the rural areas and here they are fast becoming the mentor for the youths who would later serve as the scapegoats and loyal followers of the RR cases,” Nanta was quoted as saying when speaking during a dinner with various government agencies and friends at a leading restaurant in Kapit.
Masing, when asked for a suggestion that he could give to the Home Ministry, said as it was now, he was yet to have any.
“Nevertheless, we could always get suggestions on the matter from various parties … and at the same time, I strongly believe that experts in the Home Ministry would be able to come up with a better system that would always ensure that while rehabilitating these RBC, the society would be free from their (RBC) influence,” said Masing, who is Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president.
He pointed out that the aim of rehabilitating the RBC would not be achieved if they were allowed to exert their influence on the society where they were residing.
“These two elements of rehabilitation and limiting the influence must co-exist if a particular system is to be successful in rehabilitating the RBC and ensuring the society is free from their (RBC) influence,” Masing added.