ALOR SETAR, Kedah: The mother of a Malaysian firefighter who died after allegedly being attacked during riots at a Hindu temple has expressed her grief over her son's death, saying that she has not been able to sleep since his passing.
Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim, 24, died on Monday (Dec 17) night from injuries after he was allegedly attacked during last month's riots at the Seafield Sri Maha Mariamman temple in Selangor.
His mother, Asma Aziz, told reporters at the family home in Kampung Tebengau, Kuala Kedah on Wednesday that she misses her son terribly and that she has not been able to sleep since Monday.
Muhammad Adib was very close to her and her husband, the 51-year-old told reporters.
“I haven’t touched any food yet. Only drank water a bit. No appetite," she said.
"I can’t bring myself to watch his story on Facebook," she added. "There are others who wanted to show me the postings on him but I just can’t bring myself to look at it."
Muhammad Adib's mother said she had not expected that her son, the second of four children, would leave their family so soon.
During his last visit home, mother and son had talked about preparations for his upcoming wedding.
"We (had) several chats, mainly about his wedding preparations, as the cow (to be slaughtered for the feast) is already here," she said.
“When he returned home for that holiday, Muhammad Adib brought along his new Perodua Myvi car to leave it behind for his father to use even though his father has his own car,” she added.
Muhammad Adib's wedding ceremony, which was supposed to take place on Sunday, will most likely be replaced by a prayer session.
The night the alleged attack happened, the firefighter had only been back on duty for two days, having spent a week's holiday back home, said Asma.
She added that she really wanted to see the faces of the individuals who allegedly assaulted her son, injuring him severely.
What was done to her son was unforgivable, said Asma, adding that she wanted those involved to be taken to court and punished.
She described him as a good son, one who was always seeking his parents’ views and advice in everything.
He took leave often, especially during the paddy planting season, to help his father in the fields, she said.
GOVERNMENT APPOINTS PSYCHOLOGIST TO COUNSEL FAMILY
Meanwhile, Malaysia's Ministry of Housing and Local Government has appointed a psychologist to carry out intervention crisis sessions and provide moral support for the family.
Psychologist Maznah Hassan, who is from the criminal investigation department of the Kedah contingent police headquarters, said she was appointed to assist family members - especially Muhammad Adib's mother.
“Today is my first visit to meet with Muhammad Adib's family, that is, to meet his mother," she told reporters on Wednesday. "... look at the emotional condition of the mother, her feelings and how she was accepting and facing Muhammad Adib's death."
Maznah said the duration of the crisis intervention depended on the positive development of the family, and especially his mother, in accepting Muhammad Adib's death.
"Later, there will be other follow-ups. I will come again to meet Muhammad Adib's mother and other family members subsequently," she said. "I will monitor their development from time to time until their emotions have truly stabilised."
Muhammad Adib’s remains were buried at the As-Saadah Mosque Muslim Cemetery in Kampung Tebengau, Kuala Kedah at 1.45pm on Tuesday.