KUALA LUMPUR - Entry requirements into the police force will be lowered during a campaign by the police to recruit more Chinese into the force starting tomorrow.
Bukit Aman assistant director of personnel (recruitment) Asst Comm Saiful Azly Kamaruddin said there were currently only 1,974 Chinese among the 111,395 personnel making up the nation's police force.
"One of the biggest issues is that those who apply do not meet the requirements of having a credit for SPM in Bahasa Malaysia. So now, only during this campaign period, applicants with only a pass in SPM Bahasa Malaysia can apply."
Another requirement lowered, said ACP Saiful Azly, who is heading the task force set up for Chinese recruitment, was allowing those who wore spectacles and contact lenses to apply.
"This does not, however, mean that the quality of the force is being lowered," he stressed.
Once recruited, said ACP Saiful Azly, the applicants would be trained and tutored in areas they were lacking in to maintain standards.
"Applicants who do not have a credit in Bahasa Malaysia will be tutored and they will have to retake the test until they get a credit in the subject. We will guide them every step of the way," he said.
The campaign, which will be launched tomorrow, is aimed at increasing the number of Chinese policemen in the country, especially for rank-and-file positions like constables.
ACP Saiful Azly said the Chinese only made up 1.77 per cent of the force, which was a very small fraction for the country's second largest ethnic group.
"The disparity is worse in the rank-and-file positions," he said during a briefing about the campaign at Bukit Aman here. He described the statistics as "worrying".
"We believe that the force should reflect Malaysia's diversity," he said, adding that the campaign ends on April 30.
ACP Saiful Azly said the idea for the campaign was not only to encourage Chinese youths, aged 18 to 28, to join the force but to make it easier for those who did not meet the requirements.
ACP Saiful Azly said studies carried out by the task force found that there was a misconception and stigma tied to being a policeman among the Chinese.
"Firstly, it is a low-paying job and does not offer a good career path. This is untrue as the salary of a constable with an SPM qualification is about RM1,700 (S$658), which is quite reasonable.
"This amount will then be supplemented by other allowances and perks which can bring the salary to as high as RM3,517," he said.
Despite the low number of Chinese policemen, ACP Saiful Azly pointed out that most of them were mid- to high-ranking officers, which showed that the force did indeed offer good career paths.
"We will be going all over Malaysia during this campaign period to change this misconception," he said.
Those who wish to apply can download the form from www.rmp.gov.my or walk in at one of the campaign roadshows.