I can now talk about the incident that happened at the beginning of the month, to make me think that people are essentially selfish beings. I was involved in an automobile accident. As a result, I had to go through the hassle of making a police report, assisting in the investigation and making insurance claims. Therefore, I got to experience the process.
Due to the constant interaction that I had with the traffic police, it brought some random thoughts into my head. One question that I asked was – how could we reduce corruption in the police force. Then, the idea that came into my head was to separate the money from the authority. People with authority should not deal with the money and people who deal with money should not have any authority.
You see, when we commit a traffic offense in Malaysia, the police are the ones who will issue the fine and we pay the fine at the police station. We can choose to pay the fine at any other police station in the country. However, if we pay at the station that issued the fine, we may be able to talk to the officer in charge to reduce the fine.
This is just a recipe for disaster. We have just given the people with authority, the power to deal with the money.
It would be better if we had a system where the police issued the fine, but payment was made to a totally separate body like the banks or post-office or some thing else. The whole idea is to have some sort of power separation. So, there will be no incentive for us to bargain for a reduction. There is also no room for the people collecting the payment to give us any discount.
We should not just stop at the police. In fact, the principle of power separation is something that is supposed to be practiced. However, things are not always the case with us in Malaysia. Anyway, I’m presently trying to draft up a rather long article about technological steps to reduce corruption. It’s taken a while to put things down. So, I’ll only publish it when I am satisfied with it.