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32 To Be Suspended Over Cadet’s Death

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JOHOR BARU -The Defence Ministry has ordered the suspension of 32 cadet officers detained over the tragic death of Malaysian National Defence University (UPNM) student Zulfarhan Osman Zulkarnain (pic).

Its Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said the officers would be suspended until investigations were completed.

He also said they would be dismissed from the Military Training Academy (ALK), if they were found to have “hidden” the violent crime from their superiors.

He warned that any superior or staff member who was aware of the crime but did not act would also be dealt with.

“I am prepared to discuss with the Higher Education Ministry to carry out a reshuffle in the management and administration of UPNM due to what happened,” he told reporters when visiting Zulfarhan’s family at their home in Bandar Baru Uda.

Vowing to uncover the truth behind the murder through the special investigation board chaired by Armed Forces chief Jen Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi Raja Mohamed Noor, the minister said: “My presence here is assurance that we are looking into the case seriously.

“We will be transparent with the outcome of investigations.

“The board will report directly to me. Nobody is above the law.

“Whoever is involved will be brought to justice,” he pledged, adding that he had also learnt during the visit that he and the victim’s family were distant relatives.

The minister also said he had directed the Armed Forces to review the training and management system for ALK trainees to ensure no recurrence of such incidents.

Zulfarhan, a 21-year-old final-year navy cadet officer, died on June 1 after fellow students reportedly bashed him up over a laptop dispute.

His body was found 80% covered in bruises and burn marks, and 36 students – 32 from the university and four from Universiti Tenaga Nasional – were detained by police to assist with investigations. – The Star Online

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