School principal handed 3-month jail sentence for conflict of interest transactions

SHAH ALAM, 28 July 2017:

The sessions court here yesterday sentenced a school principal to three months’ jail and RM40,500 fine after finding her guilty on three counts of abuse of power involving the supply of goods for school activities worth RM6,591.65.

“Perhaps your intention was to help the school but it was done through illicit means…,” said judge Rozilah Salleh to Norliza Mat Radzi, 49.

The court granted the principal’s application for a stay of the prison term pending an appeal, but ordered her to pay the fine – apart from raising the bail amount from RM15,000 to RM20,000. Norliza paid the fine.

She was charged with using her position to appoint Orean Collection – in which she had interest in as owner of the company – to supply teaching aid worth RM2,091.65, towels worth RM500, hampers, files, stationery and medals valued at RM4,000 for school activities.

The offences were committed at a school in Port Klang near here, between Feb 12 and April 13 last year.

She was charged under Section 23 of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 which provides for a maximum jail term of 20 years and a fine of five times the bribe amount or RM10,000, whichever is higher.

Earlier, when appealing for a lighter sentence, Norliza said she made every effort and with a sincere motive to upgrade the school which was old and in need of renovation and maintenance.

“I had no intention of using the school for self-interest and what I did was for the progress of the students and school. I believe God knows my true intentions and whatever is best.

“Even though I am punished in this world and cannot prove that I did not take the money, I am sure the students and teachers will give me their blessings for what I had done for the school.”

But the judge chided her saying that as a principal, she should set a good example in following the rules: “I deliver my judgement based on evidence and documents and I hope this sentence will be a lesson to others who want to be Robin Hood.”

The prosecution was conducted by MACC deputy public prosecutor Hazirah Azeman while Norliza was defended by counsel Mohd Tajuddin Abd Razak.

– Bernama

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