Thursday, 27 September 2012

Car parks at malls to be rated

PETALING JAYA: Car parks at shopping centres will be rated according to the level of security it offers and will be ranked in a league system.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Idris Jala said a “Car Park League Table” will challenge the management of shopping malls to ensure the security of their shoppers.

This was in light of a growing concern among shoppers that mall car parks are unsafe following a spate of assault and snatch theft cases.

“We are exploring the idea of establishing a Car Park League Table that will challenge car park operators to beef up their security and be more diligent in ensuring public safety,” said the Performance and Management Delivery Unit (Pemandu) chief executive officer.

Pemandu, together with the Home Ministry had recently engaged the Malaysian Retailers Association and Malaysian Parking Association to gather their feedback on the Safer Parking initiative.

The unit had also conducted roundtable talks with several non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to listen to their concerns on car park safety and derived ideas on what could be done to address the problem.

Idris also said the associations and the NGOs have been invited to a workshop which will determine the standard operating procedures and the criteria to evaluate and rank the car parks.

The ranking system would be based on categories such as general security on premises, lighting and panic buttons, while shopping complexes which offered the best safety features would be awarded higher marks.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said the ministry has issued a directive shopping malls and car parks to deploy trained auxiliary policemen to handle security at their establishments.

He said Tropicana City Mall, Sunway Pyramid, Suria KLCC and Pavilion would be the first four shopping malls to use the services of auxiliary policemen.

Hishammuddin said public perception of crime is important and that more action is needed to allay the concerns of the people.

He called upon more shopping malls and car park operators to follow suit by sending their security personnel to be trained as auxiliary policemen to PDRM.

He also said that a senior police officer has been appointed to lead the Government Transformation Programme's (GTP) Reducing Crime National Key Results Area (NKRA), with the focus on current issues such as the safety of customers in shopping malls and car parks.

The senior police officer is former Penang Chief of Police Datuk Ayub Yaakob.

Hishammuddin said Ayub is an officer who has an in-depth experience in addressing the current issues concerning crime and would be the point person for the police and the Home Ministry.

He said he hopes this initiative would restore public confidence on security and safety especially those concerning public areas such as shopping malls, parks and schools.


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