KUALA LUMPUR – “Mom, sometimes I perform Solat Hajat (special prayer) for you and dad, for good health,” Amiel Asyraf Abdul Rashid had told his mother Norhayati Khalid.
“He always says that to me,” recalled Norhayati, when met at Kuala Lumpur Hospital mortuary today.
Her son was one of the 23 victims of a pre-dawn blaze at the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah tahfiz centre.
Norhayati said she was informed about the fire by her husband at 7am.
“I was at my work place when my husband told me that the school that my son is currently attending had caught fire.
“We immediately went to the school to check on our son. His name was not in the list of those who survived.
“I know that he was one of those who were trapped inside as his bed was at the centre of the room,” she said.
The 42-year-old said she had only seen her son yesterday when she visited him at the school.
“Every Wednesday and Friday, my husband and I will visit him at the school during his play time between 5.30pm and 6.30pm.
“I didn’t know that yesterday would be the last time I’d see him.
“I brought some bread because he had told me that that was what he wanted,” she said as silent tears wet her cheeks.
Norhayati said her son also handed her a letter during her last visit.
“He wrote us a letter, telling us how much he loves us.
“He also apologised for everything that he had done wrong and thanked us for taking care of him.
“He also said that he do not know how to repay us and hoped that by him studying at the tahfiz, he can ‘send’ both of us to paradise,” said Norhayati.
She shared that her son was previously sent to a religious school in Kelantan for five months.
“But my husband and I could not bear to be apart from him, so we brought him back, closer to us.”
The fire has so far claimed the lives of 23 people, including two wardens.
Six other students, four of whom are in critical condition, and an outsider who tried to rescue the victims, have been hospitalised. – NST