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Datuk Bandar sued for RM500,000

The Malay Mail 14/1/2006

KUALA LUMPUR: Haris Abdullah Hue, whose two-year-old son, Putera Marzuqi Hue, plunged four floors after slipping through a broken railing at the Seri Melaka flats last month, is suing Datuk Bandar Datuk Ruslin Hassan for more than half a million ringgit.

The suit was filed by the family’s lawyer at the Civil High Court registry in Wisma Denmark at 9.15am yesterday.

In his statement of claim, the plaintiff alleged that the boy’s accident and subsequent injuries were due to City Hall’s failure to properly maintain its facilities as well as its callous disregard towards Seri Melaka flats residents’ complaints on the broken railing, which were made two years ago.

According to the statement, the aftermath of the accident has seen Putera develop several personality changes.

These include a phobia of sleeping on beds, refusal to walk and insistence that his parents carry him when going outdoors. He is also easily agitated and panicky.

Among others, the plaintiff is claiming for aggravated and exemplary damages amounting to RM500,000, recovery of medical bills amounting to RM685 and any other damages awarded by the court.

Haris’ lawyer, Wong Khai Pun, said the decision to sue was made after Ruslin failed to respond to a letter of demand delivered to his office on Thursday.

Haris told The Malay Mail that Ruslin and his officers visited his family at the Seri Melaka flats on Dec 30.

“My wife and I were not in, but he spoke with my in-laws. Ruslin told them that City Hall was willing to provide some financial assistance or compensation.

“However, that was the last we heard from him. There has been no communication since, neither from him nor his officers,” said the 28-year-old cameraman of a local production house.

Haris expressed disappointment at Ruslin’s alleged silence.

“My wife and I had wanted to personally obtain an explanation as to how the incident could have happened. I am merely doing what any father would do if his son was put at risk,” he said.

He reiterated that the lawsuit was not a result of any financial motivation.

“We are simple people and are satisfied with our place in life. The fact that our son is still alive is already a blessing.

“However, we do not want other parents to undergo what we are facing. City Hall turned a deaf ear to our complaints for two years, and a day after the incident, they fixed the problem within two hours.

“We want to teach them a lesson not to take complaints lightly. We also want other victims to realise that they do not have to sit quietly and accept whatever has happened to them.

“If something wrong has been done, we must speak out against it,” he said.

Meanwhile, his wife, Isma Zila Ilham, 27, said she feared for the future.

“Putera used to be a very active boy, and to see him cowering and afraid like this is heartbreaking. The doctors told us that another hard blow to his head would be disastrous.

“Under the circumstances, any parent would be furious. This is one way of ensuring that other people do not have to suffer like we do,” she said.

On Dec 27, The Malay Mail front-paged reports that it took City Hall less than 24 hours to fix the gap at the Block 12 stairwell at the Sri Melaka flats after the incident.

They completed repairs on two blocks within six days.

The accident saw Putera falling four storeys and landing on his head, rendering him unconscious.

A neighbour rushed him to the Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (HUKM), where he was warded for six days for a cracked skull and a swollen brain.


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