Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Action against parent in Seri Pristana issue is unfair and unjust, say politicians

Action against parent in Seri Pristana issue is unfair and unjust, say politicians

BY ELIZABETH ZACHARIAH
August 27, 2013
Malaysian Insider
Latest Update: August 27, 2013 08:12 pm
 
The arrest of a parent for allegedly intimidating the headmaster of SK Seri Pristana has angered the public, with many calling the move "unfair" and "unjust".

Yesterday, police arrested a parent for allegedly threatening Mohd Nasir Mohd Noor, about a month after the school had ordered non-Muslim pupils to have their recess in the shower room.

He had allegedly gone to the school on July 25 at 2.30pm and threatened to kill Mohd Nasir.

The parent denied the accusation, saying he had not gone to the school on that particular date.

The parent had earlier lodged a report on July 30 against Mohd Nasir and the school for allegedly taking photographs of his 10-year-old daughter in school.

This happened twice on July 29, when the headmaster had led a man to take photographs of the girl in school.

Last Friday, two policemen went to the parent's home around midnight and caused a "commotion" but did not reveal what they wanted.

Yesterday, when the parent went to give his statement at a police station, he was told that he was being arrested. They put him in an identification line-up where he was picked out by two teachers from the school.

Politicians from both sides of the divide have lashed out at the police and the Education Ministry, questioning why no action has been taken against the headmaster and the school so far.

"The arrest has angered the public who want to know when the unfairness and injustice will end," DAP's national vice-chairman M. Kula Segaran (pic) said.

"What happened to the report made by the parent against the headmaster? Was there an investigation?" asked MIC’s Vel Paari.

The school found itself embroiled in controversy following its directive to non-Muslim pupils to have their recess in the shower room during Ramadan month.

Another parent Guneswari Kelly had exposed the issue after she posted pictures of the students having their meals in the shower room online. She has since taken her nine-year-old daughter out of the school after finding out that she was being subjected to verbal and emotional abuse by teachers and other students.

The whistleblower herself has received death and kidnap threats and has lodged a report over the issue. Kula Segaran noted that so far, police and the ministry have not taken any action on the report made by Guneswari as well as the bullying of her daughter.

"This is an act of bullying and intimidation which is unacceptable."

"The public are incensed that nothing has been done by either the ministry or the police especially on these issues," he added.

The Ipoh Barat MP said despite him calling the Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin "powerless and heartless" previously, the latter has still remained silent over these issues.

"The Education Ministry has not done anything. It is as though bullying and intimidation at the school is a trivial issue."

"I shall ask the prime minister, who has the prerogative to appoint ministers, whether a minister who ignores acts of bullying and intimidation in schools, is still fit to be the Education Minister?

Both also questioned the reports made by Guneswari, and the parent who was arrested, asking if police had given it the "NFA (No further Action) treatment"?

"If the police could act on the report lodged by the headmaster, surely the police must be able to explain what has been done on the parent’s report?" Kula Segaran said.

Vel Paari, meanwhile, said he has spoken to Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low's special officer, and requested the minister bring this matter up in the Cabinet as he is in charge of public complaints.

"While we mourn children being victims of war overseas but here our children are victims of criminal intimidation by the very people who are supposed to protect and educate them. Looks like only divine intervention can save our children." - August 27, 2013.

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