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State education department should be swift and firm, says PBS sec-gen Read more:

Parti Bersatu Sabah secretary-general Datuk Johnny Mositun (second from left) handing over his personal contribution to Jilius Yapoo, the father of the16-year-old girl who has been caught in the controversial conversion recently.
KOTA KINABALU, Feb 16, 2015:
Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) secretary-general Datuk Johnny Mositun wants the Sabah Education Department to act quickly and firmly against teachers and school officials who exceeded their authority and acted beyond the limits of proprietary.

Mositun, who is also the Deputy Speaker of the State Legislative Assembly, said while he was not opposed to anyone converting to Islam or any other religion, he believed that such an important thing should be done in a proper manner, with full observance of social norms and upholding of family values.

Recently, the family of Jilius Yapoo was shocked when they found out that their underage daughter had converted to Islam without their knowledge while staying at a hostel.

“Being educated people entrusted with teaching our children proper values and respect for the law, the school principal and teachers concerned should have handled the matter in a humane and compassionate manner.

“After all, it is a matter for the student and her family, affecting their lives not just for now, but until the end of their lives. But they (the teachers) seem oblivious or unconcerned about the mental stress and problems they have visited upon a whole family,” he said.

Mositun added that the parents of the 16-year old student concerned were distraught, traumatised and offended at the way in which the school authorities seemed so unwilling to let the family sort things out properly as a family should.
“Anyway, I hope the Director of Education (Datuk Jame Alip) will impress upon all principals and teachers the need to conduct themselves with decorum and full observance of the country’s laws and confine themselves to teaching and instilling good family values in their students and respect for their own parents.

“Matters of religion and conversion should be left to the religious authorities,” he said in a statement today, adding that the school principal should also be in the know of what is happening in the school.

He said the police and Education Department must conduct a thorough investigation for the sake of justice and restoring public confidence in the administration of schools in the state and country.

“The police cannot just say that the student is not a Muslim and leave it at that. The student’s religious status is not for the police to determine, but that of the religious authorities and courts,” he said.

Having said that, Mositun added that the police still could not wash their hands of the matter because whether or not the conversion was valid, the police were duty bound to investigate the school authorities.

“They (police) must determine if the teacher or teachers concerned had violated the law. They should not get off scot-free if they had broken the law. The director of education also has some explaining to do,” Mositun stressed.

Describing the family as “very poor”, he said the teenager and her three siblings had no choice but to study in Kinarut and stay in the school hostel.

“Now with all the pressure brought about by what has happened to their daughter, the parents have asked me to talk to the education authorities about transferring their children to another school.

“They feel a change of environment is necessary for their daughter and her siblings to get over this traumatic event,” Mositun said.

Controversial conversion aside, the senior politician expressed concern over the dilapidated condition of Jilius Yapoo’s house in Kampung Kadamaian in Papar.

Mositun was touched by the family’s situation and had approached the District Office to see what could be done to alleviate their problems.

“I will also approach the relevant ministry to look into the possibility of providing this poor family decent housing under the ministry’s housing programme for the poor,” Mositun said, when visiting the Jilius’ family to hand over his personal contribution to them.


  1. Palui karaja itu cikgu kasih islam murid. Bagus dia dihantar pigi ikut ISIS di Syria tunggu kena bom US dan Jordan.

  2. YB Limbahau.. saya rasa Calon bulila.. PKR mensng Limbahau..


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