The ruling was made by Magistrate Nur Syafiqah Noorinda at the Kuala Lumpur Magistrate Court today.
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Kuala Lumpur Magistrate Court had allowed for the premises occupied by the Rumah Bonda to be reopened, however, it cannot operate as a care centre, reported Bernama.
The ruling was made by Magistrate Nur Syafiqah Noorinda following Rumah Bonda founder Siti Bainun Ahd Razali’s application to remove the seal on the premises.
The premise near Setapak, Kuala Lumpur was sealed by city’s Federal Territory Social Welfare Department (JKM WPKL) after Siti Bainun was charged with a child abuse case, involving a 13-year-old down syndrome girl known as Bella.
According to her lawyer Asiah Abd Jalil, the Social Welfare Department did not object to her client’s application to remove the seal.
“Rumah Bonda has been compounded amounting to RM5,000, which was paid on April 25,” Asiah was quoted as saying.
Rumah Bonda filed an application to remove the seal order obtained by JKM WPKL on its premises for it to be used for other purposes other than as a care centre on 7 June.
According to the report, Siti Bainun said that she had received a notice to seal the premises from JKM WPKL.
The notice stated that Rumah Bonda in Taman Setapak would be closed in accordance with Section 16 (1) of the Care Centres Act 1993.
She however argued that the act of sealing the premises on the grounds that Rumah Bonda was not registered under the Care Centres Act 1993 was unfair, and not in accordance with the principles of administration and law as JKM WPKL.
This, according to Siti Bainun, was because JKM WPKL was aware that Rumah Bonda was in the process of registration.
Siti Bainun had been charged with two counts of neglecting and abusing Bella, to the point of causing the victim to suffer physical and emotional injuries. She pleaded not guilty to both charges.
The charge was framed under Section 31 (1) (a) of the Child Act 2001, which provides for a maximum jail term of 20 years or a fine of RM50,000 or both on conviction.