Irda's safety and security blueprint takes shape

JOHOR BARU: Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Khalid Abu Bakar was recently briefed on the implementation of various safety and security efforts being undertaken in Iskandar Malaysia by Iskandar Regional Development Authority (Irda).

Khalid was informed of the implementation status of the Iskandar Malaysia Safety and Security Blueprint, which includes auxiliary police, Integrated Emergency Response Centre, foreign worker enclaves, community police post and closed-circuit television camera (CCTV) surveillance.

IRDA chief executive Datuk Ismail Ibrahim said IRDA was working closely with the police in the implementation of the blueprint.

Ismail said there were currently 18 community police posts operated by the police and nine more would be built next year.

Under the community policing initiative, a police officer and his family will reside in a house that has been converted into living quarters and office in each of the housing estates in Iskandar Malaysia.

The idea is to create high visibility of police presence in the communities to deter crime.

The CCTV surveillance system is one of the strategies in the blueprint to tackle crime through effective use of modern technology.

A study on CCTV installation completed in May 2011 had recommended that 1,467 CCTVs to be installed in Iskandar Malaysia.

The installation of 250 CCTV cameras under the first package covering North Johor Bahru and Nusajaya police districts commenced in May last year

The installation of 165 CCTVs under the second package in the Kulaijaya police district commenced in January.

In addition, 72 cameras were installed in three local authority areas in Iskandar Malaysia with funds from the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry.

"The locations of CCTV installations are determined based on the hot spots and traffic incident areas identified by the police and local authorities and confirmed in the CCTV study. The CCTV system is connected to a command centre monitored by the police," said Ismail.

"Apart from the CCTV initiative by IRDA, the Safe Camera Programme (SafeCam) launched by the police is authorised to access 19,336 CCTVs in Johor, including Iskandar Malaysia, which have been registered under the programme."

IRDA has also the approval of the police to establish a team of 942 auxiliary police officers for Iskandar Malaysia.

The auxiliary police will reduce the ratio of police personnel to population to the 1:250 targeted in the blueprint.

To date, 201 auxiliary police have been trained.