Judge, alleged rapist dishonour nation
Noor Afizal Azizan, the Malaysian tenpin bowler, fills Malaysians with disgust and so does the judge who let him off the hook.
One Malaysian Olympian manages to unite the whole country and does our nation proud with his true grit, his fighting spirit and his hard work, but another sportsman, Noor Afizal Azizan, the Malaysian tenpin bowler, fills Malaysians with disgust.
Noor Afizal allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in a hotel room in Ayer Keroh, Malacca, on June 5.
On Aug 7, he escaped punishment when the Court of Appeal president Raus Md Sharif set aside the five-year jail term imposed on Noor Afizal and agreed with Noor Afizal’s counsel, Hisyam Teh Poh Teik, that public interest would not be served by a custodial sentence, as Noor Afizal showed great promise.
Nothing was said about the future prospects of the victim – the girl Noor Afizal raped.
Hisyam said that Noor Afizal was 18 when the offence was committed.
Again, they ignored the age of Noor Afizal’s victim. She was only 13 years old when she was raped.
Is this how the judiciary works in Malaysia? Do judges in the Court of Appeal set aside justice because the needs of the alleged rapist are more important? In this case, the allged rapist happens to be a national bowler and could win medals for the country.
What has the de facto Women, Family and Community Development Minister Najib Tun Razak to say about this?
What are the views of the de facto Law Minister Nazri Abdul Aziz?
What are the priorities of the appeal judges? Is their primary concern the winning of sporting events?
Did they think Noor Afizal should be left off lightly as this is his first offence? Did they think as a nationl athlete, he could bring “honour” to the country through sport?
Women have no recourse to justice
The actions of the Court of Appeal judges simply reinforce the views that women in Malaysia have no recourse to justice and that victims of rape are not important and their futures are not worth considering.
Around the world, sports personalities are required to behave. If they utter racist comments, they are hauled to court. If they misbehave on the pitch, they are banned and fined. If they commit rape, they are jailed. If they drive recklessly, their driving licences are taken away and they are put behind bars. If they are in possession of drugs, the punishment is severe.
Sports personalities are seen as role models for children and young people. Whatever they do, both on and off the pitch or court or bowling alley, is scrutinised by the rest of society.
Did the Court of Appeal judges stop to consider the consequences of their judgment? When people who are guilty of serious crimes are let off with a rap on the knuckles, then what is the message being conveyed to the public?
In Malaysia, young victims of rape wait a long time for their cases to be heard. If the government is serious about combating child sexual abuse, they should bring these cases to court quickly.
The child is growing and the effect of having to recall their unpleasant experiences can be devastating. When they are in their early teens, they are searching for their identity, and they are aware that they have become a victim of sex crime.
The cross-examination, to which they will be subjected, is detrimental to their pride. At this older age, they are more acutely embarrassed than when they were younger, and because of this, they may sometimes appear to be uncooperative.
Experts in the field have always maintained that the longer the case is dragged on, the better the outlook for the offender.
Noor Afizal allegedly raped his 13-year-old victim in 2009. In 2012, he was set free.
What of the girl? What of her future prospects? What of her educational future? What if she had become pregnant? Would he have married his victim and then divorced her, once he tired of her? As many Muslim men do.
Noor Afizal is praised as a tenpin bowling champion. He is probably funded by various sporting bodies to train and to go overseas for competitions.
And the girl? Who will help her deal with the long-term psychological and emotional trauma? Studies have shown that abused children grow into adults with suicidal tendencies and many other deleterious habits.
People who work with the victims of sex crimes allege that the offender often pleads guilty, just before the trial, to gain a lighter sentence. Was this the tactic employed by Noor Afizal, to escape a prison sentence?
Our judges have dented public confidence in the judiciary by failing to impose sentences that are seen as a deterrent.
The rape of a minor is statutory rape, whether or not it is concensual. What if the victim had been coerced or her life threatened?
Why is Malacca notorious for the rape of minors? What sort of justice can women get in Malaysia when it is alleged that even ministers and sports personalities can escape punishment just because of their position in society?
Mariam Mokhtar is a FMT columnist.
This judge ought to be sacked. This is another reason why this country new a new administer. So ABU it is!ReplyDelete
Recall Thambychik's rape of an under aged girl and Lim Guan Eng got jailed instead? Malaysia boleh again!ReplyDelete
Jail or no jail he is still a convicted rapist....can he still bring honour to the country?ReplyDelete
Our judges do not know the meaning of "statutory" Can someone identify the judges so that we'll congratulate them on their excellency's judgements next time we meet them on the streets.ReplyDelete
In Malaysia what is not possible in other countries can be made possible here. That's why we have a popular slogan known as "Malaysia Boleh". We have half past six ministers, we have half past six judges. In fact we have half past six people in charge of almost every ministries. That's way we have to change the government to make Malaysia a country that will be respected by others.ReplyDelete
At the rate our judiciary is going downhill, soon victim such as the poor girl in this case will be publicly stoned to death. It looks like some invisible hand is at work again. The judiciary has brought disrespect unto itself.ReplyDelete
Good news for you potential rapist out there. Now you can rape and get away with it because you are a first time offender.ReplyDelete
No worry one.....ReplyDelete
Here, in Melaka, we oredi have a special school.....for all those pregnant girls.....in Jasin.....can send here.....she will have future maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!
Chong Wei, labelled by Perkasa as a pendatang, bring honour n fame to Malaysia.ReplyDelete
The rapist above, a non-pendatang, brings shame to the country and judicial and untold pain, trauma & misery to his rape victim.
Malaysia boleh! Malaysia is in this state because of the pukimak UMNO....especially the evil mamak from Kerala....stirring discord amongst the races daily.....biar dia mampus cepat cepat
What else laws Pak in Malaysia, that is not being used by the filthy rich and famous criminals to work for them? How many cases the appellate court has been overriding the high court, made the rakyat helpless and frustrated in our justice system more and more that we need a reform over this mess don't you think so? Judge without jury system is the brainchild of Mahathir.ReplyDelete
Do you think Malaysians would be proud if this rapist makes it big in the bowling world?ReplyDelete
(A reminder to the 3 judges - Bowling is not listed in the Olympics.)
And do you think I will be proud if my Prime Minister is not only corrupted but a murderer???
THE LAW IS THE LAW, and I must say the decision of these 3 apeal judges. if they are not mentally retarded, they must have been overly amazed and fascinated at what they, and only they can see of their future.
Maybe they are trying to condition our minds to accept their decisions - for whatever it is worth!
Wishing you and your family, Emmet Roshak, Terrina and your two lovely grandchildren, a happy Aidil Fitri. Selamat Hari Raya Pak, maaf zahir dan batin.ReplyDelete