Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Naomi's Death - The Aftermath

Hi everyone,

Over the weekend, I recieved a letter from the Dr. Mohd Zairi Serlan, Director of Department of Veterinary Services, Penang, in response to the Justice for Naomi Petition I personally mailed to him.

It seems like he has a completely different story from what has been originally narrated to us by Raihana, Naomi's owner, although it should be taken into consideration that her story has also come second-hand from what been told to her by her family. Raihana's folks were the ones who took Naomi to the clinic, but Raihana didn't know about anything that had happened until after Naomi died.

I'll be posting a reply back to Dr. Serlan to thank him for his efforts, and as well as forwarding the letter to the newspapers who have expressed interest in the case. If you have been personally spreading the word about the petition, I would greatly appreciate it if you could help send this out to those who expressed concern too.

You may take a look at the letter below, as well as Raihana's response to it. I shall leave the rest to your judgement.

Whatever has actually transpired, we now finally have received word from someone who matters, and I think his explanation and clarification has been clear enough. We wanted answers, and without the *numbers*, an investigation would have been extremely unlikely. So to all who signed and helped spread the word, I really have to say a huge

thank you.

Let's keep our voices loud and strong, and make it matter.

DVS Penang letter, Page 1

DVS Penang letter, Page 2

Raihana's response:

Dear all

I wish to thank every one for your support. Without you all, I would have never been able to highlight this case. In any case its only fair that we listen to both sides of the story. And now we have the clinic version. Before I go any further I just want you alll kind souls to remember that I am not doing this for financial resons, all I wanted was reasons for the cruel death of a life.

Now regarding Dr Serlan's letter.

1. Why send Naomi only after she was critically ill? I didnt know she was. And is that an excuse for her death? Last time I saw her, she was not critically ill and I have vaccination records from one of the most expensive private clinics in penang island, more than 30KM away from my house in the mainland (i never had the heart to throw away anything related to my cat). The most recent vaccine was a booster I gave in January. She was hail and healthy then.

2. Why leave her behind?. Although I personally did not leave Naomi there (I would have never done that),she was left there by my uncle Dr Siddique even though there were no boarding facilities because they promised to look after her. Being a retired vertrinarian himself, based on their promises at the clinic she was left at the care of the staff in the clinic. There was no food provided because there was no mention of it. I have left animals for boarding in clinics numerous times (and they were stray cats too) before I rehoused them. And in all those times, the clinic provided food. If the clinic were not able to feed her, why didnt they let my uncle know? My brother was involved in this too and he has confirmed that there were promises to look after her by the staff. If the clinic did not provide such services why take her in? If they didnt atleast then they would have gone to a private clinic. My uncle was attached to the Government clinic and based on this relationship with the workers he left Naomi there.

3. They took the dead cat away because there were no mention of autopsy. If they had wanted to do an autopsy they would have to know the cat was dead. But they didnt even know it. My cousin on going to pick it up found it dead.

By the way there is no vetrinarian in that clinic. It is run by a bunch of assistants with no proper qualifications. How could they diagnose the cat so accurately with no vet in there?

Also the day I found out about her death I got a call from Mr Ramu who was in this from the beginning (he was one of the staff who had said he will care for naomi) When I threatened to make a case of it he apologised and said that it was the fault of one mr Raju (name not sure). Even last week Mr Ramu had gone to penang to meet my mother and before that my uncle to apologize. Why would they go to such lengths if they were in the clear.

I sadly have nothing in black and white and cannot prove my case against such a big entity. But for him to shift the blame on me hurts very badly. But when has the guilty ever taken blame? Especially when it is the government? I just hope other ordinary folks do not make the mistake I made.

Sadly for me there was only one Naomi. I loved her very very dearly and to think that she died in a painful way is hurtful. Yes more than anyone else I blame myself, I was not a good master in the end. And I keep thinking how much she would have wanted me there when she had no water or food. I neglected her and for that I have a lifetime to regret.

As for the clinic- No they did not do whatever possible to help Naomi, they just killed her in a very agonizing way. I rather wish they just put her to sleep.

with sorrow,
Raihana Souket Ali

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Bound by love

Here's an update on Kit Ong's first feature-length film, The Flowers Beneath My Skin.

Think Online have been doing a terrific job with getting Kit's project out in the open. They have created a cute little official website for the movie. They have also published the first in-depth article about Kit and his directorial debut, constructed from interviews with the man and others involved in the film.

They first media screening was held on Friday 16th June at The Attic in Bangsar. Unfortunately I wasn't able to make it as I had musical rehearsals. Coverage appeared in the press a week later.

'Flowers' in The Star

'Flowers' in CinemaOnline

To give you guys a partial look into the transformation process of retard into lesbian-with-fetish-for-ancient-Chinese-foot-binding, here's a couple of clips I've dug out of my video archives.

This is Elaine, my onscreen lover, starting off the binding process with bandage...

Then securing it with surgical tape and another layer of cheap-but-does-the-trick chiffon from Kamdar.

The finished product:

It looks pretty, but walking around like that for hours on end does have its shortcomings.

This is what one foot always looked like after unwrapping from a day's work. (Yes, my muscles are relaxed here.)

If looking at all this make you smack your lips in temptation, wait til you see the part about castration.

Here are details of the first public screening:

DATE: Tuesday, 25th July 2006
VENUE: Theatrette,
HELP University College
TIME: 8pm

The irony in this is that the press conference for Broken Bridges is to take place that afternoon on the same day, with no mention of rehearsals. Just a few days ago however, Joe the director has decided that rehearsals will proceed as usual. So that means I'm gonna have to give the screening a miss for the second time. According to the press however, I might get one last chance on Sunday 6th August, when it will apparently be shown at KLPac, the same place where my rehearsals are held, and right after I finish too. I'm keeping my toes and fingers crossed.

Hope you guys can make it for the HELP screening though, so you can let me know how wierd it was to watch Malaysia's first black-and-white silent film.

Thanks for the support!