New wheels for straight-A boy


  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 08 Dec 2004

BY LOONG MENG YEE

SHAH ALAM: Quadriplegic Suhazli Mohd is a straight-A student and he has a new set of wheels to help him get around.  

Sirim, at its Hari Raya open house yesterday, presented to Suhazli a modified electric wheelchair that, among other things, could  

be moved with a joystick and had a built-in writing platform.  

“This is truly wonderful. I like my new chair very much. It is very cushy and comfortable. Best of all, I can move it on my own, not so susah (difficult) anymore,” said a happy Suhazli.  

For a month, Sirim experts from the Advanced Manufacturing Centre in Shah Alam made frequent trips to Suhazli’s house in Kelantan to have a better understanding of his mobility needs.  

THOUGHTFUL GIFT: Suhazli testing out his modified wheelchair at Sirim Hari Raya open house in Shah Alam yesterday. Beside him is his mother Atikah Abdul Kadir. STARpic K.K.SHAM.

They spoke to his family members, his teachers and even observed Suhazli’s daily schedule to see how best they could modify a wheelchair to suit his needs. 

“We will continue to check on Suhazli and modify the wheelchair accordingly. For instance, we are thinking of adding a voice-activation feature on the wheelchair,” said centre senior general manager Dr Mustaza Ahmadun.  

While the team was satisfied with the successful modification of the wheelchair, which was bought at a special discount from a caring company, it was the happy smile on Suhazli’s face that made the effort so wonderfully worthwhile for the people at Sirim. 

Born without limbs, the 12-year-old has always depended on his trusty wheelchair to get around. 

The problem was, the wheelchair, given by the Welfare Department, was a simple one and he had to depend on others to push him around. 

He had always depended on his mother Atikah Abdul Kadir, 49, to wheel him to school and back, as well as to other places. 

On school days, Atikah would wheel Suhazli to SK Kereteh, located about 500m from their home. 

She would then return home, only to make a second trip to school during recess time to see to Suhazli’s mid-morning meal and his toilet needs. Then it is back to home again before making the final trip to school in the afternoon to fetch Suhazli home. 

Suhazli enjoys reading books and tinkering on the computer. He wants to be an architect when he grows up. 

Atikah and Suhazli were special guests at the function where the boy, a cheery fellow who recently scored 5As in the UPSR examinations, was presented with a special gift that made him smile from ear to ear. 

Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Jamaludin Mohd Jarjis had specially requested Sirim to customise a wheelchair for Suhazli, after reading about his plight in the newspapers. 

Apart from the wheelchair, Suhazli also received a duit raya packet and some “back to school” stationery from Sirim. 

Sirim also presented duit raya and the school stationery to 29 children from an orang asli village in Hulu Langat.  

Sirim had adopted the village as part of its social responsibility to the nation. 

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