20 February 2015
The warden who was responsible with converting the student should be herself felt how bad it was if any member of her family or if she has a children converting to other religion!
Jilius Yapoo, a Bumiputera Christian whose 16-year-old daughter was controversially converted to Islam by a former hostel warden, is considering hauling the school authorities to court for allegedly betraying his trust.
The 46-year-old rubber tapper said today that he holds the school SMK Kinarut accountable for under-aged daughter’s conversion out of Christianity without his permission and hopes to prevent similar cases from happening in the school or elsewhere.
“I feel like they betrayed the trust I gave them to take care of my daughter. It should not have happened, and even if she wanted to take up another religion, they should have informed me of what was happening, instead of letting me find out on my own, and then washing their hands of it now,” Jilius told reporters today.
The father of eight said he would seek legal advice from PKR MP for Penampang Darell Leiking who has expressed interest in taking up his case.
The controversial conversion hit headlines last week after the family learnt the Form Four student — who cannot be named as she is under-aged — was made a Muslim without her family’s knowledge or consent.
The drama continued this morning when Jilius went to the school hostel to take his daughter and three other children studying there home for some family time, but was told by the school authorities that she was “under police protection”.
“She told me she wasn’t sure she wanted to come home because she was afraid she would be beaten. I don’t know how that thought came to her mind. I just want her home and with her family to talk,” he said, adding that the school would not release her until his lawyer had phoned the school.
It took several hours of waiting and phone calls from 8.30am before SMK Kinarut’s authorities agreed to send its four students ranging from Forms One to Four home to Kampung Kaiduan, Papar in a school van.
|Jilius Yapoo talks to his village development and security chairman Michael Frederick after visiting SMK Kinarut and was told the school would send his four children, residing at the school's hostel, home for the day.|
Julius had made the 12km journey on the unpaved road by motorcycle.
“It’s probably better that they sent my kids home as I only have a motorbike. But I think they were not very forthcoming and gave me the run-around and a lot of excuses.“Even now, they are sending the children back for tonight, but they are taking them back again tomorrow afternoon for some sort of examination review. I am not clear what exactly,” he said.
Last Thursday, Malay Mail Online reported that the authorities were investigating the “Islamisation” of a Christian student in SMK Kinarut near here by a former hostel warden.
Jilius had described how he had cried when he first saw her daughter sporting the tudung, or headscarf associated with Islam, at the school.
On Monday, the school principal met with officials from the state Education Department, a police representative, Jilius, as well the student’s elder sister at the school and told them that in the eyes of the law, his daughter was not yet a Muslim, although she had recited the Kalimah Syahada to declare her acceptance of the faith.
The school’s principal, Datin Joharah Abdullah told reporters that she was unaware of the “Islamisation” of the student until the police report was made, adding that the matter was now between the students and their parents.
|Jilius Yapoo and his family are distraught at the thought of their 16-year-old daughter converting into Islam without their knowledge during her board at SMK Kinarut, Sabah|
Jilius said that his wife, Jaina Yassin, has been sick with worry and has lost her appetite since they first heard of the incident a week ago.
“She hasn’t been eating and she’s now quite ill. I think the news has taken its toll on her. My priority now is to spend time with the family and try to bring everybody together and discuss what we will do,” he said.
He said that the other villagers had heard of the incident and many had condemned the incident, not because of the religion, but because it was done seemingly underhanded without his knowledge.
“I am definitely going to try to transfer my children out of the school to somewhere else nearby, hopefully,” he said adding that his other children in the school have expressed fear that they may be bullied or ridiculed by other students.
The school could not be reached for comment.
State Education director Datuk Jame Alip said that the parents and principal should meet to resolve the matter.
The family’s church Pastor James Mojikon said that he would talk to the family in the coming weeks about the Christian faith in the hopes of keeping the family intact.
Bukuttunggal.com ...This story remind me of the few Christian students studied in Peninsular Malaysia were converted to Islam. I was indeed very lucky as was listened to my parent advice not to convert....Allelluia Jesus for still loving meMupok Aku