According to Malaysiakini, Home-maker Yim Pek Ha was found guilty today of grievously hurting domestic helper Nirmala Bonat and sentenced to 18 years in jail.

Usually, when much publicized cases go to court, I am always torn between believing, wanting to believe and don’t know who to believe. Older generation folks may remember the S. Karthigesu case where he was accused of murdering his sister-in-law, Jean Pereira. I think I was in my late teens or early twenties when the trial proceedings of this case was in the paper everyday. Reading them can make one go crazy because we do not know who to believe. Yet, one has that wickedness of wanting to know the gossips like how Karthigesu kissed, where they had their rendevous and etc etc. You know…the sicko part of us want to dig out all the dirts and etc. In the end, I think one of the witness, a person related to either Karthigesu or Jean was found to lie in court and hence, Karthigesu was freed from a death sentence.

And let’s us not go into Altantuya case or the DNA mattress case. Shhh….I do not want to discuss those cases. Sensitive issues.

Regarding the maid abuse case, I still remember how I felt when it was first publicised. The woman, Yim Pek Ha claimed she had post-natal blues and seek sympathy because she has four children. I too just had a baby and have four kids at that time and yet, I cannot sympathise. However, I was angry with the press at that time because before they found evidence that Yim Pek Ha was guilty, her face was already on TV and the papers and condemned as a monster. The photos of Nirmala bruised face and body on the paper were so horrifying, we automatically judged that Yim Pek Ha was guilty.

Months or years later, I saw another news that Yim Pek Ha was free and happily smiling. We were told that it could be the maid own’s self-inflicted injuries. But self-inflicted till her nipple detached (I am only recalling what I read, I may be wrong)? So, I was torn between believing Yim Pek Ha and Nirmala. One one hand, I want to believe that Yim Pek Ha is not such a monster. On the other hand, I cannot believe Nirmala is telling lies and self-inflicted so much injuries. However, it does not make sense that she endured so many times of abuse.

Today, the case is put to rest. Yim Pek Ha is found guilty. She will go to jail.

But a lot of lives have been destroyed. Those of her children, her husband and I wonder what will become of Nirmala. I hope Yim Pek Ha receives the mental help she needs. Otherwise, the 18 years will serve no purpose. And I hope no one abuses their maids ever. Let’s hum, “Heal the world” by Michael Jackson (whom if you do not already know, is Mikhaeel, a Muslim now).

More on Malaysiakini :

DPP Stanley Augustin said this was the first time in the history of the courts that an individual had been charged with three counts under Section 326 of the Penal Code, for offences against the same victim.