Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Tortured by relative and no one to turn to

After years of being beaten up and tortured with hot metal rods by a relative, a 37-year-old mother of five decided that enough was enough.

Rosmala Mansor obtained an interim protection order from a magistrate's court, but even that failed to stop her alleged abuser. Within days of getting the protection order, she was assaulted again in public.

Rosmala, from Taman Permai, claimed that her numerous complaints to the police had fallen on deaf ears because he was a former policeman. She said her 48-year-old alleged abuser was only arrested recently after she threatened to bring the matter to the federal police headquarters in Bukit Aman.

Rosmala said in the latest incident two days ago, her relative beat and kicked her when they bumped into each other in Bukit Chedang.

She claimed that a passing patrol car stopped but the two policemen merely watched as her relative assaulted her. "None of them dared to intervene. I pleaded with them to arrest him, but they just stood there," she said.

"They only handcuffed him after I snapped their pictures with the camera on my handphone and threatened to bring the matter to their superiors. "That was the second time the relative was arrested in the last six months.

Despite having burn scars and swellings on her body, medical reports and witnesses willing to testify on her behalf, Rosmala claimed her relative was released the first time and was never charged.

He is now under remand but Rosmala fears for her safety as he might be released again. "He even beat up my daughters when they tried to protect me when he assaulted me," she said.

"The only ones who seem to be paying attention are the doctors at the hospital who treat me every time I get beaten up.

"In fact, they (the doctors) are the ones who told me to get help from the media. They have seen this happening to me too many times."

Rosmala said there were times when she came close to losing the will to carry on, but hung on for the sake of her children. Currently living in a wooden hut with her daughters, she is also finding it tough to earn a living.

Business at her eatery had suffered since the only access road was cut off by a development project. "We try to get by with whatever little I can make. It gets even harder now with Hari Raya coming. I feel so sorry for my children. They do not deserve this kind of life." Rosmala said she had approached leaders and elected representatives before, but none of them were interested in helping her.

She had also sought help from the Welfare Department but claimed that she was only given some rice two months ago. Rosmala hopes officials from the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry will look into her problems and help to protect her family. [more]

[nst online]
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