Earlier last week, Malaysians were outraged when a Datin who was initially charged with the attempted murder of an Indonesian maid, Suyanti Sutrinso, managed to escape a jail sentence recently.
The Datin in question, identified as Rozita Mohamad Ali, had used a kitchen knife, steel mop, clothes hanger, and umbrella to physically abuse 19-year-old Suyanti two years ago. The abuse left the young maid with multiple injuries to her hands, legs, head, and internal organs.
Despite the brutality of the abuse, Datin Rozita had her initial charge of attempted murder reduced to voluntarily causing grievous hurt, according to the New Straits Times. This charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in jail.
After she had pleaded guilty to the reduced charges, Sessions judge Mohammed Mokhzani let the woman off and just sentenced her to a good behaviour bond of RM20,000 for five years.
In light of this sentence, many Malaysians have responded in outrage, saying that she cannot go off without serving any jail time due to the severity of the abuse she had inflicted.
A petition was even launched to call for justice to be served. The petition, called “Dato: Equal Justice”, was launched by Equal Justice For Malaysians on Change.org. The group reportedly had plans to send the petition over to the authorities, including Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department once it hit 15,000 signatures.
An excerpt from the petition’s description reads,
“We call for equal justice for the rich and poor. The crime by Datin Rozita Mohd Ali towards her maid is despicable, inhumane and clearly should result in stricter punishment than a ‘good behaviour bond’.”
“Even if she is a Datin, connections don’t give her the right to treat people like that. What message are we sending to our people and children? ”
Now, just two days after the petition was created, more than 42,000 signatures have already been garnered (at time of writing), making them just 8,000 signatures shy of their 50,000 signature goal.
With tens of thousands of Malaysians banning together, hopefully the relevant authorities pay attention to this issue and take appropriate action soon.
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