Child abuse discussion center apologizes, temporarily closed

KOTA KINABALU: A childcare center issued a full apology in the midst of a child abuse firestorm as authorities pieced together what caused one of their caregivers to allegedly abuse a four-year-old at school.

Leong Fei Yeen, director of Taska and Tadika Sri Kandi, said they have decided to temporarily suspend their operations until further notice to direct efforts to “address the problem and implement the necessary improvements”.

In a letter she wrote here, she wrote, “On behalf of Taska and Tadika Sri Kandi, I offer my most sincere apologies following the (alleged) extremely unfortunate incident of child abuse that unfortunately occurred in our kindergarten.”

“Our hearts go out to the parents, families and children affected by the incident, as well as the relevant public who have rightly expressed their concerns about this incident.

“We accept full responsibility for the situation and accept our duty to provide a safe environment for every child in our care.”

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The 27-year-old caregiver, who was arrested on Wednesday (August 9th), has been detained for one week from Friday (August 11th) to facilitate investigations into the child abuse case.

A two-minute, 12-second clip of the alleged incident has gone viral since Wednesday evening.

It showed a woman slapping and hitting a child multiple times, including a metal object. She is also seen pulling her hair in front of the other kids in the center.

This caused an uproar among netizens, with many denouncing the caregiver’s actions and others blaming the childcare center in Luyang for the incident.

Police received three reports regarding the incident, one from the child’s mother, one from the center operator and the suspect who claimed that the child’s father had attacked them.

Leong assured that the center was fully committed to cooperating with ongoing investigations, which he said were initiated soon after the incident.

“We are fully prepared to cooperate in all investigations conducted by the relevant authorities.

“The person responsible has been arrested, and we offer our unwavering support to the authorities who have handled this matter diligently.

“We strongly condemn the actions of the person concerned. In this case, we accept our responsibility and take urgent measures to remedy our shortcomings.

“This public apology reflects our commitment to transparency and accountability,” Leong said. Said.

ALSO READ: KK child care center employee under investigation for child abuse

He also thanked Luyang councilor Phoong Jin Zhe, who is also the provincial Minister of Industrial Development and Entrepreneurship, and said that he is not only interested in the case, but taking the time to understand the real situation.

“The Minister’s valuable insights underscore the paramount importance of putting children’s well-being first and foremost.

“We are committed to implementing his guidance as we strive to rebuild trust and maintain the standards we aim for,” he said.

Phoong had visited the building on Thursday (August 10th) with Kota Kinabalu deputy chief of police, Supt Kalsom Idris, and officers from the Social Welfare Department.

After the incident, Datuk James Ratib, the state Minister for Community Development and Welfare of the People, said that guidelines on daycare centers would be tightened to ensure that incidents of abuse against children do not occur.

He said he had instructed the Social Welfare Department to investigate the incident thoroughly.


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