Friday, October 19, 2007

Of vegetables and a bag

I received a serious jolt that day. The manner in which little Nurin was found was a devastating experience for me. I really do not want to describe the gruesome find in detail. But eversince September 17, when little Nurin was found in a Diadora sports bag together with a cucumber and brinjal, I was terribly shaken.

I can no longer look at cucumbers and brinjals the same way. The other day, while watching an English Premier League interview on television, in the background was names of soccer sponsors. My eye suddenly caught the logo of Diadora...immediately I lost track of the television and my mind raced to little Nurin.

Oh Nurin! May your passing be a monument to the living that we should all protect and defend children....irrespective of colour, creed and culture.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Have you heard about "List 99"?

In Britain, the Department of Education and Skills (DfES) mantains a special category of people (both men and women) who are barred from working with children. They are barred from working with children irrespective of whether they are in a permanent employment, social work or even in a voluntary capacity. Click here on how UK does its checks before employing an individual to work with children.

Under List 99, which has been put to good use for over 80 years, there is a wide list of reasons why these individuals are barred. This includes sex related offenses, keeping images of child porn, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, violent crime, deception, mental illness and many more. Since we are all targetting to be a developed nation, it is high time we think and act like a developing nation, rather than continue third world nation behaviour. Sometimes it is easy to heap all the blame on the Government. But we parents aren't always blameless.

What are we teaching our children? Are we too busy to give our precious time to children? Why are we not campaigning to exclude sex offenders from getting close to our children?

Perhaps it is time our Wakil Rakyats debate these pertinent issues in Parliament rather than wasting time and arguing over impactless issues.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Nurin's Law?

In The Star paper this morning, Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil says that the Malaysian Government may soon be declaring war on paedophiles. They intend to do this by looking for predators on the Internet chat channels preying on kids.

This is all well and good, and I support it. But it is all too late for little Nurin. Too late for all the other little girls who also needlessly lost their lives in the hands of perverts.

If Datuk Seri Shahrizat is willing to listen, with due respect, I suggest we enact a similar law to Megan's Law. Let' s call it Nurin's Law. It will be a fitting monument to little Nurin, who could have been saved. Nurin's Law would demand that the Police maintain a list of sex offenders, which would be made public so as to caution the all parents and the public to be alert and extra vigilant.

Dear Datuk Seri Shahrizat, can you please lead the way to champion and defend the defenseless? Can you get parents to stand up and be held accountable in safeguarding OUR kids? Children belong to us all. We must protect them. The Police can also do more to protect children by training its officers to be thorough in its investigations.

Please help before the predator who mercilessly struck many other children decides to strike again. Nurin's Law, anyone?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Megan's Law

Just found out that the move to make public the National Registry of Sex Offenders in the United States came as a result of a tragedy - Megan Nicole Kanka. At the time of her brutal murder, she was 7 years old. Her head was smashed affer being raped and violently brutalised by a known sex offender living opposite the Kankas in New Jersey, United States.

The law requiring all 50 states in the United States to make public the sex offender list was named Megan's Law, in grim reminder of what happened to little Megan. The little angel, Megan, could have been anyone's child.

The Kankas have since started a foundation - The Megan Nicole Kanka Foundation - to champion the rights of parents to know if sex offenders live in their neighbourhood. Read more about Megan Kanka here.

And maybe, try remembering children who are constantly being subjected to abuse, pain and torture in various places all over the world. Say a prayer that they will all be rescued.

Sex Offender List to be made public?

The Star newspaper today reports the Inspector-General Of Police (IGP), Tan Sri Musa Hassan as mulling if they should make public the Police's list of sex offenders.

From The Star: “We will let the public know what type of crime the convicted person had committed and to be wary of him if he is in their neighbourhood," says Tan Sri Musa. The Star reports also says that such list has been made a national registry in Unites States, Britain New Zealand and Australia.

While Nurin's killer(s) is/are still at large, perhaps the Police's move to release the names of the sex offenders would help the general public to be wary of some these individuals.

I support such a move by the Police. Do you agree?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Welcome to Malaysians For The Children

Dear fellow Malaysians,
Today will be a day that where I hit a new high point in grieving for dear Nurin Jazlin Jazimin. Thrpough the pictures in the newspapers, she really looks like an angel. But those pictures of her lifeless form splashed in the newspapers, really broke my heart. My mind and heart refuses to accept that she had been subjected to such a horrific crime.

Even animals care for their young. We are all God's stewards in this life. Someone once said that 'Children are like a promise from God that life should go on for another generation'. Alas, for Nurin, her tender life ended so tragically under circumstances that there isn't sufficient word in the English language to describe what she went through.

As I write these words, I remember the tragedy that hit the children in Beslan in 2004. Hundreds of children fell victim to terrorist with a political agenda. Some of these kids were dastardly shot in the back as they were running to their rescuers. How heart rending it was for us all to see the videos.

Today, we have in our hands another video that can make even the hardened heart weep. We saw a video released by the Malaysian Police featuring a man alighting from a motorbike, and coolly carrying a sports bag, allegedly carrying the battered and lifeless body of little Nurin. Here angelic form was so battered that even her own parents were not able to identify her.

I still ache and am filling with anger against the pervert who did this. I am reminded again, of the all the little angels who fell victim to perverts. Ang May Hong, Nurul Huda, Audrey Melissa, and many more kids have now become a mere statistic to what can happen when we let our guard down. As a parent, I want to do more to fight these criminals and protect children.

Though I do not want to point a finger at anyone, but we Malaysians could do better. I planned to start this Blog as a citizens's initiative to fight crime against children. After the Beslan tragedy, someone said that 'There is no such thing as other people's children'. How true! Should we not treat all children as our own and protect them? I stll see kids being left alone in shopping malls, crossing the road and even walking to and fro school alone. The other day, in Maju Junction in Kuala Lumpur, I saw three little kids, possibly 8 years old and below getting into a an elevator and leaving without any adult supervision.

I hope that through this blog we can explore how as parents we be more vigilant in protecting our kids. We can use this forum to lobby the Government and the police to do more to protect children. Rape and incest against children are also happening at alarming rate, as we read in the newspapers. Police too need to be more responsive and be well trained to handle crimes against children.

I think, if we can all hold hands together, setting aside our racial prejudices, distrust and help one another, we can assist the police and the authorities to reduce crime and perhaps, bring the culprits to face the law.

What say you? Come Malaysians, let us do our bit for the children in our beloved country. Lets help the authorities in fighting crime. We can do something if we are united in mind and in spirit. Will you lend a helping hand?

A concerned and grieving parent.