Mentally ill woman caged for 10 years

Ms Nasitah Yahya being brought out from her room in Kelantan, Malaysia, by welfare department officers on Friday.
PHOTO: Mentally ill woman caged for 10 years

Another case of neglect and abuse has emerged in Malaysia.

A woman with mental problems was found caged in a small room in the state of Kelantan.

The woman, Ms Nasitah Yahya, 44, was rescued by police and the district welfare department on Friday after a tip-off, The Star reported.

Ms Nasitah was found covered in faeces and urine.

The authorities had to cut open the iron grille entrance to the room, which was hidden from sight, to rescue her.

It is believed that she had been forced to live in such conditions for the past 10 years.

But her family denied that they had neglected her or were cruel.

Mr Ismail Ibrahim, 57, Ms Nasitah's stepbrother, told The Star yesterday that she was locked up because she suffered from chronic mental problems.

"My sister is a danger to herself and the people around her. She is unable to lead a normal life and is very aggressive.

"We are worried about her safety and for others as she has a habit of wandering around if left alone."

He said the reason she was deprived of water and electricity was because she had a habit of playing with water and had smashed the bulbs in the room.

"There are lights outside the room that are activated from 7pm to 7am," he claimed.

He also said that he provides her with three meals a day, cleans the room and washes her clothes from time to time.

A villager, Mr Robiah Abdullah, 54, claimed that the woman's problems began after her father died, leaving no one willing to care for her.

He told the New Straits Times: "For her water supply, the family connected a garden hose to a pipe outside which leads into the room.

"But she can have water only if someone turns on the pipe from outside," Mr Robiah said.

Ms Nasitah's case comes a week after disabled teenager Muhammad Firdaus Dullah was rescued from a filthy home where he had been left alone.

The 15-year-old was found in an emaciated state in a faeces-strewn room by Negeri Sembilan Immigration Department officers who were conducting an inspection.

His mother, Lolanopita Sadi, was charged on Friday with two counts of deliberately neglecting her disabled and mentally challenged son.

The boy is now recuperating in hospital.

This article was first published on June 28, 2014. Get The New Paper for more stories.