Student sues English teacher for non attendance…

31 Oct 2018


KOTA KIN­A­BALU: Siti Nafi­rah, a na­tive of Kota Be­lud, had filed a civil suit against the English teacher and seven oth­ers, in­clud­ing the gov­ern­ment and Min­is­ter of Ed­u­ca­tion, for re­fus­ing to teach English lessons to her and her Form Four class­mates in 2015.

In the writ of sum­mons, filed at the High Court Reg­istry through Messrs Rox­ana and Co on Oc­to­ber 16, plain­tiff, Siti Nafi­rah had named Mohd Jainal Jam­ran (the teacher), Hj Suid Hj Hanapi (prin­ci­pal of SMK Taun Gusi), the school SMK Taun Gusi, Kota Be­lud dis­trict ed­u­ca­tion of­fi­cer, Sabah ed­u­ca­tion di­rec­tor, di­rec­tor-gen­eral of ed­u­ca­tion Malaysia, min­is­ter of ed­u­ca­tion Malaysia and the Gov­ern­ment of Malaysia as the first, sec­ond, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, sev­enth and eighth de­fen­dants re­spec­tively.

The plain­tiff is seek­ing, among oth­ers, a dec­la­ra­tion that the first, sec­ond, fourth, fifth, sev­enth and eighth de­fen­dants were in breach of their statu­tory duty un­der the Ed­u­ca­tion Act by fail­ing to: en­sure that she is taught the English lan­guage dur­ing the pe­riod from Fe­bru­ary 2015 to Oc­to­ber 2015; pre­pare her for ex­am­i­na­tions as pre­scribed un­der the Ed­u­ca­tion Act. She is also seek­ing a dec­la­ra­tion that the sec­ond, fourth and fifth de­fen­dants were in breach of their du­ties un­der Reg­u­la­tion 3C, 25, 26 of the Public Of­fi­cers (Con­duct and Dis­ci­pline) Reg­u­la­tions 1993; a dec­la­ra­tion that the acts of the first, sec­ond, fourth, fifth and sixth de­fen­dants amounted to mis­fea­sance in public of­fice.

The plain­tiff is also seek­ing a dec­la­ra­tion that the first, sec­ond, fourth, fifth, sixth, sev­enth and eighth de­fen­dants have vi­o­lated her con­sti­tu­tional rights to ac­cess to ed­u­ca­tion guar­an­teed to her un­der Ar­ti­cle 5, read to­gether with Ar­ti­cle 12 of the Fed­eral Con­sti­tu­tion, and dam­ages, costs and any fur­ther and other re­liefs which the court may deem fit to grant.

The suit will be heard on Novem­ber 19 this year at the High Court here.



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Nafirah claimed in her suit that Jainal had failed to turn up to teach English from February 2015 until October 2015 except for one week when the Education Ministry and state Education Department officials visited the school.

She claimed that despite multiple complaints including from a Fullbright senior English teacher assistant grantee seconded to the school and the school’s English Department’s head, the authorities which were the Education Ministry, the state Education Department and the headmaster failed to act.

Favourable comments

Further to that, she claimed headmaster Suid tried to cover-up the absenteeism by asking the teacher to “fabricate” his attendance to show that he was only absent for two months.

The suit also alleged that Suid intimidated students to give favourable comments about the teacher.

Nafirah is seeking a declaration that the defendants are in breach of their statutory duty under the Education Act by failing to ensure that she was taught English during the period of absenteeism and that this violated her constitutional right for access to education.

She also wants a declaration that there was a breach in duty and misfeasance in public office.

She also seeks exemplary, general and aggravated damages as well as cost.

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