Shanmugam says case of toddler abused by mom is heartbreaking; asks if current laws are 'adequate'

Law Minister K Shanmugam said there is a need to see if the current legal framework is "adequate" for similar child abuse cases.
Law Minister K Shanmugam said there is a need to see if the current legal framework is "adequate" for similar child abuse cases.ST PHOTO: CHEW SENG KIM

SINGAPORE - Describing the recent case in which a mother and her boyfriend was jailed for abusing her two-year-old son, who subsequently died, "heartbreaking", Law Minister K Shanmugam said there is a need to see if the current legal framework is "adequate" for similar child abuse cases.

In a Facebook post on Thursday (July 7), Mr Shanmugam wrote: "For cases like this, we need to see whether the current legal framework is adequate. They ruthlessly tortured the child for more than a month, and effectively killed him.

"We have to also encourage people to report when they see abuse immediately," he added, highlighting how the case came to light after those staying with the family called for an ambulance.

 
 

Mohamad Daniel Mohamad Nasser died last Nov 23 after a five-week campaign of torture wrought by his mother Zaidah, 41, and her boyfriend Zaini Jamari, 46.

The pair -both cleaners - kicked and slapped the toddler almost daily, forcing him to stand with his hands on his head and to eat dried chilli. Zaidah was on July 5 sentenced to 11 years' jail and Zaini, 10 years' jail and 12 strokes of the cane.

Mr Shanmugam, who is also Minister for Home Affairs, said: "Poor defenceless child. How can any human being do this to a two-year-old? Let alone a mother to her own child."