How could this have happened for TWO freaking years???

From The Star today:

PENANG: Ten-year-old Yeap Jia Hui, who has been living alone in a smelly rubbish-filled apartment at Ferringhi Mutiara Apartment in Batu Ferringhi for almost two years, now has someone to care for him.

Childless housewife Yeap Choon Lean, 59, will be taking Jia Hui home to live with her and her retired carpenter husband in Kuantan, Pahang.

Choon Lean, who is Jia Hui’s maternal grandaunt, had wanted to adopt him when he was born but his mother decided to hold on to him.

“Even before his mother abandoned him, I visited him every two to three months when I was in Penang.

“I do not have children of my own and I am happy to bring him home to Kuantan,” she said yesterday.

A happy-looking Jia Hui said he was delighted to able to live with his grandaunt.

“My grandmother cannot care for me because she is old,” he explained.

The grandmother, Law Ah Eng, 68, lives in an apartment several floors below but her relationship with Jia Hui’s mother, Yeap Kim Hong, 46, had been strained for almost a decade.

Jia Hui said his mother gave him an ATM card and visited him every two to three weeks.

“But she has not called or visited me for about two weeks and she has not banked in any money, normally RM20 to RM30 a month,” he said.

He said his schoolmates and teachers did not know of his condition and said he walked to school, bought food after school and attended extra classes three days a week.

“I do my homework before going out with friends and would be home by 8.30pm,” he said.

Jia Hui has five other half-brothers. He is Kim Hong’s fifth son.

“Nobody knows who Jia Hui’s father is,” said Ah Eng, who is also raising Kim Hong’s fourth son.

To say that I was shocked and dismayed would be an understatement. How could anyone not notice that Jia Hui has been fending for himself since he was EIGHT-years-old?

This really says a lot about apathetic attitude of people in Malaysia today when it comes to the welfare of children. Poor Jia Hui would not have to live for two years in a rat hole if someone had just taken time to notice that the boy has been living by himself with no one to take care of him for long periods of time. I would have just done that.

My heart always ache when ever I read about children living in poor conditions, suffering from abuse, poverty and neglect, murdered and raped… Their childhood ought to be the best, carefree years of their lives but because of the selfish, cruel and monstrous nature of many adults including their own parents and caretakers, their childhood has been reduced to something that is worth forgetting. This is the 21st century… children should be enjoying their lives, playing with friends and doing things kids normally do these days…

I hope with all my heart that people start to open their eyes and ears to ensure that there are no more Jia Huis. I know there are many more kids like him in this country yet to be discovered… these kids deserve better… They should not be made to suffer and to take adult responsibilities at such a young age!

If more people cared, there wouldn’t be anymore Jia Huis, Sharlinies and Nurins.


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