GEORGE TOWN, Nov 8 — The Education Ministry is open to meet the parents of a Form Four student who was allegedly bullied in a boarding school in Kuala Kangsar, its deputy minister Lim Hui Ying said today.
She said the ministry is aware of the bullying case in the prestigious Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK) — the alma mater of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim — and said that the case had been investigated by the police.
“We do not compromise on bullying cases, we will not take sides in this case,” she told reporters after launching Anjung Ketipang Payung at SK Tan Sri P. Ramlee here.
“I want to stress that this case is under investigation and I understand the feelings of the victim’s parents,” she added.
She said if the parents want to meet and discuss the case with them, the ministry’s doors are always open.
“We will not take any sides, we treat everybody the same, for us, all students are the same,” she said.
She said the ministry has already taken appropriate actions about bullying, and there is a circular containing new guidelines on how to manage bullying and sexual harassment cases in schools.
“We take this seriously and as the minister has said previously, we aim to eradicate three main issues in schools, sexual harassment, bullying and racial discrimination,” she said.
Early last month, police confirmed they had started investigations into a bullying case involving a Form Four student, who was allegedly assaulted by his Form Five senior at Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK) in September.
Kuala Kangsar district police chief Assistant Commissioner Omar Bakhtiar Yaacob confirmed the police received a report on the incident at about 10am on September 24.
The sister of the victim recently vented her frustrations on social media over the “light punishment” received by the student who had allegedly assaulted her brother.
Yesterday, Perak police chief Datuk Seri Mohd Yusri Hassan Basri said the investigations into the case were completed.
He reportedly said investigation papers had been submitted to the state Deputy Public Prosecutor Office for further action.
Besides Anwar, at least three other ministers went to MCKK: Rafizi Ramli, Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz, and Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad.
Meanwhile, when asked about a separate case involving a teacher who allegedly exposed himself to a student in a school in Balik Pulau, Lim said she was aware of the case.
“The case is under investigation [by the ministry],” she said, adding that the police are also looking into it.
“This is a serious issue, if it happened, it is considered a sexual harassment case.”
However, she said she had no details on the case and did not know if the police had detained the teacher.
Lim also spoke on the upgrading of toilets for schools under the ministry.
“Each school under the ministry has received RM70,000 each to upgrade their toilets,” she said, adding that some of the upgrading works are still in progress.
“As of October 31, a total of RM578.02 million was allocated to 8,020 schools to upgrade their toilets,” she said.
She said the progress of the upgrading works is satisfactory and hoped that the schools would take care of the cleanliness of the toilets after the upgrading works.