SEREMBAN: The Coroner’s Court here will hold an inquest on June 29 into the death of a 15-month-old toddler found dead at a childcare centre three months ago.
Sessions Court judge Rushan Lutfi Mohamed said the court would also hear applications from the relevant parties on the number of witnesses to be called and the duration of the inquest to determine the cause of Nour Rania Asyifaa Yuseri’s death.
The proceedings were supposed to start Monday (May 30) morning but had to be deferred as the coroner was on emergency leave.
State prosecution unit head Badius Zaman Ahmad told the court his team intended to call 10 witnesses to testify at the inquest.
“We believe lawyers holding a watching brief for the family of the deceased will also be calling witnesses.
“We will discuss the matter with them and then inform the court as to how many witnesses will eventually be called,” he said, adding that it was up to the court to make the final decision.
Muhammad Amin Anuar, counsel for the family of the deceased, told the court that his team also intended to call 10 witnesses.
“However, we need to discuss this with the prosecution to avoid duplication. We will also apply for copies of relevant documents such as the forensic, pathology, chemistry and post-mortem reports,” he said.
Muhammad Amin was assisted by Musfira Mohd Fahmi and Gaithri Thomas.
“We will be calling in our own witnesses purely to help the court get justice for the deceased and not to delay the matter,” Muhammad Amin said when met outside the court later.
Nour Rania was found dead by her babysitter in her cloth cradle about an hour after she was put to sleep in a room at the centre on Feb 22.
The babysitter told police she found the child’s head dangling over the side of the cradle when she went to check on her.
She reportedly tried to resuscitate the victim but was unsuccessful.
The toddler was rushed to the Sendayan health clinic but doctors failed to revive her.
A post-mortem revealed that her death was due to compression of the neck.
There were 15 children including the deceased, aged between six months and seven years, at the centre when the incident happened.
Two babysitters, aged 27 and 39, were also present at the centre, which has been operating from a single-storey corner house since the end of 2019.
The centre, however, was not equipped with CCTV.
Nour Rania’s father Yuseri Yusoff said he was not happy with the initial findings and asked police to investigate the matter under Section 302 of the Penal Code for murder.