KUALA LUMPUR: The accused in the trial involving a Down Syndrome teenage girl known as Bella, told the court that the girl was never asked to eat chilli and faeces, or bound and splashed with hot water and tortured with a hot pan.
Rumah Bonda founder Siti Bainun Ahd Razali said such incidents never happened to Bella as claimed by fifth prosecution witness (SP5) Yasmin Nahar Mahmood, who is a former resident of the welfare home.
“From what I can remember, Yasmin told the court that I had told her to keep Bella tied up all the time, give her chilli and faeces to eat, splashed the girl with hot water, scolded and tortured her with a hot pan.
“There was no need for me to do all these to the girl,” she said yesterday during examination-in-chief by her lawyer Mohammad Farhan Maaruf at the Sessions Court here, Bernama reported.
Siti Bainun was making her defence on charges of neglecting and abusing the 13-year-old Down Syndrome girl.
The accused said she also had never ordered Yasmin and another former resident of Rumah Bonda, known as Aida, to ill-treat Bella or told them to splash hot water on the girl as she (Bella) had never caused problems.
When questioned by Mohammad Farhan about Yasmin’s statement that she (Siti Bainun) ordered her to feed Bella with chilli, Siti Bainun said such a thing had never happened.
“I have never hurt anyone, although among the many people in the house, Yasmin was the one who gave me a headache every day,” she said.
On Nov 24 last year, Siti Bainun was told to enter her defence on both charges after the court found the prosecution had succeeded in proving a prima facie case against her.
She was alleged to have committed the offences in a condominium unit in Wangsa Maju between February and June 2021.
The charge, framed under Section 31(1)(a) of the Child Act, carries a jail term of up to 20 years or a fine of RM50,000 or both, if convicted.
The hearing before judge Izralizam Sanusi continues.