Porn HM’s transfer draws ire

Porn HM’s transfer draws ire

KOTA KINABALU: A decision to immediately transfer a headmaster who shared pornographic pictures and video clips in a WhatsApp chat group has angered many parents.

Several parents questioned the Sabah Education Department’s move to transfer the headmaster to a rural school after the controversy broke out.

“His behaviour is seriously worrying. How can the Education Department just transfer him to another school?

“They should pull him out of the school and place him at the department’s office pending a decision,” said an irate parent, who declined to be named.

The headmaster, who had formed the WhatsApp group, was caught uploading and sharing pornographic pictures and videos by one of the group’s members.

The member, who immediately left the group, claimed a Sandakan-based blogger had raised concerns about the issue.

“The WhatsApp group has been deleted,” said the member, who wanted to remain anonymous.

Sabah Education director Datuk Jame Alip said an investigation was underway and the move to transfer the headmaster was an “immediate measure” taken by the department to calm the situation.

“Many parents are angry and we understand this, which is why the best immediate measure is to first transfer the headmaster,” he said.

A report on the case would be filed with the Education Ministry for further action, he added.

“This is an isolated case and we need to be very careful about how we handle it,” he said, adding that any further disciplinary action would be decided by the ministry.

Some have claimed that the headmaster had added schoolteachers to the group but they had left immediately.

An Education Ministry official said the harshest punishment the headmaster could get was to be sacked.

“But there are standard operating procedures which must be followed before the punishment goes up to that level,” said the official.

“Solid evidence must also be presented to support the case.”

National Union of the Teaching Profession secretary general Datuk Lok Yim Pheng said the headmaster had set a very bad example for other school heads and suggested that he be sent for counselling.

“However, this case is very subjective as there is no law stating that he is not allowed to do what he did.”

This news first appeared in the Star.

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