Saturday October 20, 2012
Mediation bid fails in Indonesian maid abuse case
By M. MAGESWARI
KUALA LUMPUR: Abused Indonesian maid Nirmala Bonat has failed in a mediation bid to settle her civil dispute for damages with her former employer.
Judge Zainal L. Salleh met both parties at a mediation centre here in separate sessions yesterday.
Lawyer Kavimani Muthayam acted for Bonat while Gurmeet Singh appeared for the employers.
Gurmeet said the parties could not agree on the terms of settlement, adding that the matter was fixed for case management on Oct 24.
Kavimani said Nirmala would be called in the trial to prove her claims.
Indonesian Embassy officer Galuh Indriyati Sulaiman, who accompanied Nirmala, said the victim was prepared to go for trial and was not keen on the compensation claims.
On Jan 28, 2010, Nirmala filed a suit claiming she suffered pain, humiliation and mental anguish while working for former air stewardess Yim Pek Ha, 44, and her husband Hii Ik Ting, 46.
Nirmala is asking for RM28,545 for loss of income and RM10,616 for other expenditures.
She is claiming for damages over loss of comfort, medical expenses, humiliation, physical and mental anguish, permanent scars and transport expenditures, besides costs and other relief deemed fit by the court.
In a statement of claim, Nirmala said she had worked as a maid for the couple between September 2003 and May 2004.
In her papers, Nirmala said she had been hurt with a hot iron, hot water, a metal cup and a plastic hanger. She also said she was insulted by Yim during the period.
She claimed that Hii had neglected his duty to ensure that she worked in a safe environment.
She also contended that Hii had failed to ensure proper medical treatment for her injuries.
On Dec 3, 2009, Yim, who was convicted of causing grievous hurt to Nirmala, had her sentence reduced by the High Court from 18 years to 12 years following her appeal.
Yesterday, Nirmala spoke about her life now.
“I got married in 2009 to my schoolmate,” said the 28-year-old.
She said her life with Yusof, 32, who works on a ship, was a happy one.
They have a son, who is almost three years old.
“I am now working as a maid for a couple in Surabaya. My new employer is very considerate,” she said.