Court throws out ex-airman’s suit over assault by seniors

  • Nation
  • Friday, 23 Sep 2016

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court has struck out a lawsuit by an airman who was sacked after he was found to be unfit to serve the Royal Malaysian Air Force because of his “mentally unstable” condition.

The former airman had sued the Defence Minister and three others for RM13mil in damages.

Mohd Islahuddin Abdul Razak, 29, who was a second airman in the RMAF, claimed that his immediate superior was negligent in acting on his complaint that he was assaulted by his seniors.

High Court judge Justice Nor Bee Ariffin allowed Friday the application by the minister and three others - the Armed Forces Commandant, the air force commander and the Labuan air base commander - to strike out the lawsuit on grounds that it was time-barred.

“The suit should be filed within three years of the alleged assaults,” Senior Federal Counsel Rosli Ahmad told the media after the decision was delivered in chambers.

He said Justice Nor Bee ordered the plaintiffs to pay RM2,000 to the defendants in costs.

Islahuddin’s lawyer Noor Azah Mahbob was quoted by the media as saying that the delay was because his dismissal only took place in December 2014.

In his suit, Islahuddin said that in the first incident on Nov 11, 2009, a senior caused serious injuries to his right eardrum because of alleged offences in his duty and uniform.

In the second incident on Nov 25, 2009, he said he was injured on the left eardrum when he was assaulted by another senior because he did not have enough knowledge about the air force and he allegedly failed to recognise his seniors.

He said the investigations into his complaints began only after they reached the Air Division headquarters in January 2010 and he was later referred to a hospital.

The air operations commander then issued a directive in February 2011 for action to be taken against those found to have injured Islahuddin.

He said the two seniors were tried in separate courts martial and were found guilty.

In his statement of claim, Islahuddin said a medical board found him unfit on June 17, 2013 due to the assaults and that he should be dismissed from service because of serious mental health problems.

Islahuddin said he now has to be fully dependent on his family as he has no chance to find a job.

He and his father Abdul Razak Baharum, 55, are the plaintffs in the civil suit, which was filed on Oct 1 last year.

In the suit, Islahuddin sought RM10mil in damages from the defendants over loss of future income, calculated from January last year to the estimated age of mandatory retirement for airmen.

He also asked for RM500,000 in general damages for injuries to his eardrums and to seek treatment for trauma and psychiatric problems, and RM2.5mil in exemplary damages.
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