They keep demanding the shut down of Chinese and Tamil Primary Schools!


Proponents of vernacular education previously pointed to Article 152(a) to defend the existence of such schools, noting that it states citizens were free to use any language other than Bahasa Malaysia for education.

29 September 2015

The Mufti, in his statement, urged Putrajaya to abolish vernacular school on the grounds that it would reduce inter-ethnic hostility and conflict.

Free Malaysia Today

Hindraf wants Perak Sultan to remove Mufti

September 29, 2015

KUALA LUMPUR: Hindraf Makkal Sakthi, the ad hoc apolitical human rights NGO working across the political divide, has appealed to the Sultan of Perak to remove the state Mufti on the grounds that the latter has crossed the line and brought his position into public disrepute and public contempt. “Since he’s not confining himself to the reasons why he was appointed, and was more interested in playing politics with sensitive issues, he should be removed.”

“We are of the opinion that he’s not fit to hold the office of Mufti of Perak and should be removed from office to protect and uphold the principles of peaceful co-existence among the various ethnic groups in the country,” said Hindraf Perak Secretary Chandrasegaran Subramaniam.

He was giving details on a letter that Hindraf had sent to the Perak Sultan on the matter.

He’s not confining himself to the reasons why he was appointed and is more interested in playing politics with sensitive issues.

The Mufti, in his statement, urged Putrajaya to abolish vernacular school on the grounds that it would reduce inter-ethnic hostility and conflict. “This is a statement which has long been recycled for political mileage,” said Chandrasegaran. “Any productive measures should be based on the concept of integration rather than assimilation.”

His statement was totally unsubstantiated, added the Hindraf Perak Secretary, with possible malicious intent to instigate ill-feeling among the people. “Such careless and insidious statements will in general create anxiety, fear, distrust and misunderstanding.”

The Hindraf Perak statement stressed that Malaysia was a nation of many multis and this should be seen as a source of strength rather than weakness. “Discrimination and policies that promote assimilation should be rejected.”

28 September 2015

Shamsudin Hamid, the coordinator of the Association of Parents and Individuals towards Revising the Education System (ASPIRES), “You want all Malaysians to study in national schools?…Stop driving the non-Malays away with the religious prominence in school, revise the curriculum, give teachers greater recognition, and improve the facilities.”

Malaysian Insider

All hell will break loose if vernacular schools shut down, say education activists

All hell will break loose if vernacular schools shut down, say education activists

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Despite Putrajaya’s assurances that Chinese and Tamil schools are here to stay, the recent “red shirt” rally reignited calls for the government to shut down vernacular schools for the sake of racial unity.

Long a subject of debate in multiracial Malaysia, advocates of single-stream education say all children should integrate under one school system, so as to expose them to the different ethnic communities in Malaysia from young.

Lawmaker Zairil Khir Johari, who leads DAP’s debates on education policies in the Dewan Rakyat, told The Malaysian Insider he believed it would serve no purpose at all.

“People say vernacular schools should be abolished because they are not multiracial. But Chinese schools are becoming even more multiracial than national schools now.

“In Kelantan, for example, the average number of non-Chinese pupils in Chinese schools is at 28%.”

He also argued that forcing all parents to send their children to just one type of school would not necessarily expose them to other races.

This was because many national schools would still be dominated by one ethnic community, because of demographics, he said.

Zairil Khir Johari, who leads DAP’s debates on education policies in the Dewan Rakyat, says Chinese schools are becoming even more multiracial than national schools now.

“So why push for just one school system? It serves no purpose. Instead, we should be advocating choice, a liberal education system, and more autonomy for schools.”

“If you start forcing parents to send their children to national schools, I think there’s going to be a civil war. It has to be natural, voluntary,” said Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim, chairman of Parent Action Group for Education (PAGE).

– See more at:

The Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025

October 2014


Utusan Malaysia assistant editor Ku Seman Ku Hussain, “It seems this group (puak) of 604 people is far worse than Bangladeshis who can speak the Malay language in just three months.”

“SJK(C) is the catalyst for many Chinese to isolate themselves from accepting the Malay culture.”

‘These students are worse than Bangladeshis’ Utusan compares non-Malay speaking vernacular school students to

An editor of Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia has blamed vernacular schools for the inability of Chinese and Indian Malaysians to speak the national language, describing them as worse than Bangladeshis.

Utusan Malaysia assistant editor Ku Seman Ku Hussain cited research in 2010 by Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s Institute of the Malay World and Civilisation lecturer Teo Kok Seong, who conducted a survey of 14,000 national service trainees at 79 training camps.

Of this, it was found that 604 Chinese and Indian Malaysian trainees were unable to speak the Malay language, he said.

“The proportion is very large and this is the ‘contribution’ of vernacular schools in the context of national unity that we boast about.

Chinese schools more multiracial, Nik Nazmi tells Umno

“At the end of the day, education is a matter of parental choice.

“Parents will choose whichever stream will give their children the best education and an inclusive learning environment,” he added.

Turning the table on the argument from Umno leaders that vernacular schools sow the seeds of division, PKR Youth chief Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad said the racial composition showed otherwise.

Nik Nazmi noted that many Chinese schools are more “multiracial” than national schools and “some race-based parties out there”.

Children from all ethnic backgrounds, including Malays, can be found thriving in vernacular schools at present.

Though Nik Nazmi admitted that multiple education streams posed challenges to national unity, the “social contract” guaranteed the right to vernacular education and this cannot be changed without the consent of all ethnic groups concerned.

He also called on detractors to stop barking up the wrong tree.

Instead of wasting time and needlessly increasing ethnic tensions by trying to abolish or handicap vernacular schools, Nik Nazmi said, efforts should be made to improve the conditions in national-type schools so that these schools become the first choice for all Malaysian parents.

Police chief: Umno man just made a suggestion

Chua Soi Lek: ‘Umno seeking publicity over vernacular schools’

Criticism against vernacular education at Umno divisional annual general assemblies is a bid for easy publicity, said former MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek.

Instead of encouraging a multilingual Malaysia, he said, Umno divisional leaders wilfully ignore that the right to mother tongue education is protected by Article 152 of the Federal Constitution.

“This is an old issue often used by politicians from both (sides of the) political divide to make them look great and good,” he said in a blog entry today.

Petaling Jaya Utara Umno deputy division chief, Mohamad Azli, was reported today as saying that the Umno general assembly next month should discuss closing down Chinese schools, claiming that the vernacular schools are purportedly used by the opposition to spread racial and anti-government sentiments.

‘Opposition not fuelled by Chinese schools‘: Gerakan slams Umno for using that excuse to kill off vernacular schools.

MCA Youth has made police report regarding suggestion that Chinese vernacular SJKC schools be abolished.

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Probe Umno man for sedition over call to scrap Chinese schools, says MCA: KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 5 — MCA leaders ca…

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 5 — MCA leaders called today for a sedition investigation against an Umno division leader for suggesting that the ethnic Malay party that dominates government debate abolishing the Chinese vernacular school system at its annual assembly.

MCA religious harmony bureau chair Datuk Ti Lian Ker said Petaling Jaya Utara Umno deputy division chief Mohamad Azli Mohemed Saad’s proposal went against the Federal Constitution and contradicted Barisan Nasional’s policy in allowing Malaysians to study in their mother tongue.

“Not only has Mohamad Azli challenged the rights of all Malaysians to study their mother-tongue language, but he has also questioned the legitimate rights of the Chinese community to education, and his careless call is liable to create racial tension,” Ti said in a statement today.

He reminded Mohamad Azli that the late Sabah Umno MP Datuk Mark Koding was charged with sedition in 1978 for calling for the closure of Chinese and Tamil schools. He was convicted four years later.

“Even in the previous general election, the BN government had pledged to continue funding for the construction of national-type schools, and if Mohamad Azil disagrees with this, he is very much welcomed to leave BN,” said Ti.

Umno assembly told to consider abolishing Chinese schools: KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 5 ― An Umno man has called for th…

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 5 ― An Umno man has called for the Umno general assembly to discuss abolishing the Chinese vernacular school system as it purportedly promotes racism and anti-establishment sentiments.

Petaling Jaya Utara Umno deputy division chief Mohamad Azli Mohemed Saad was reported by dailies Mingguan Malaysia and New Sunday Times (NST) today as saying that the upcoming annual Umno meeting in November should also mull raising the intake of Malay and Indian students and teachers in Chinese schools to 60 per cent.

“Many are of the opinion that Chinese vernacular schools have been exploited by opposition parties to incite hatred towards other races, and [to] spread racial and anti-government sentiments,” Azli was quoted as saying by NST.

He added that Chinese schools should be placed under the Education Ministry instead of allowing them to operate independently.

In early May 2013, Muhyiddin promised ‘no closure of Chinese schools, not even on’.


Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Arshad, Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) pro-chancellor, wants the government abolish the schools where Mandarin and Tamil are the main languages of instruction.

The Malay Consultative Council says that vernacular schools are unconstitutional.


Excerpts from

Malaysian Insider

Blind spots in the Malaysian education blueprint – Dr Kua Kia Soong

September 08, 2013
Latest Update: September 09, 2013 01:27 am

1 There is a glaring contradiction in the blueprint’s commitment toward promoting unity and inclusiveness for it hardly considers the development and growth of the SRJK schools and Independent schools within the national education system. Considering Chinese and Tamil schools were part and parcel of the national education system at Independence 56 years ago, there is no reason why sustaining them today in our much more developed state should be a problem. There is also no reason why the Malaysian education system cannot accommodate some English-language streams for those children whose mother tongue is English, when we have had so much experience handling English-language education since colonial times.

2 Although the education minister keeps insisting that the government has no intention to do away with Chinese and Tamil education, the reality shows that these schools have been treated like stepchildren in the national education system all these years and government leaders continue to denigrate these schools as being obstacles to integration.

The gross discrimination in financial allocation to the Chinese and Tamil schools (less than 5% of total allocation to all schools) through the years further demonstrate the lack of commitment by the government to mother tongue education of the non-Malays as a cornerstone of inclusiveness.

3 Learning second languages effectively is not simply a question of increasing the contact hours for the students. The proposed 240 minutes of BM and the same number of contact minutes of English for Chinese and Tamil schools smacks of a quantity fixation rather than quality learning of second languages. As with the previous curriculum of learning maths and science in English, the amount of curriculum time in the Chinese and Tamil schools for this, has been arrived at through political horse trading rather than the demands of effective language teaching.

Has any thought been given to the effect of all these extra hours that Chinese and Tamil primary schoolchildren will have to endure under the new curriculum?

* Dr Kua Kia Soong is the adviser for Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM).

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.

For the full article, click on


Malay groups insist vernacular schools unconstitutional

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 27 — Education conducted mainly in any language other than Bahasa Malaysia is against the Federal Constitution, the Malay Consultative Council claimed today.

In a draft of resolutions made at the end of their national education congress earlier today, the council criticised vernacular schools and private universities and colleges for disregarding Article 152 of the Constitution, which requires all official government matters to be conducted in the national language.

The council also slammed the government for allowing itself to be held ransom by parties that are opposed to adopting Bahasa Malaysia as the main language in their schools, as the long-standing issue of multiple education systems will only eat away at national unity and the integrity of the federal constitution.

“We must be firm and uphold the law and the federal constitution, especially Article 152 and the Education Act 1996 (Act 550) in administering the nation’s education,” the council said in its draft of resolutions.


Vernacular schools cause of polarisation? What about Malay-only schools?

Published on Jun 28, 2013

The spectre of polarisation rears its ugly head and two prominent personalities have suggested they be closed for a single education system. Supported by Malay NGOs, they claimed that vernacular schools have been the cause of racial polarisation in the country.

We speak to four other personalities, versed in the field of education for their views on this claim.

The four are:

Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim, Chairperions, Parent Action Group for Education (PAGE)

S Pasupathy, President Tamil Foundation

Azmi Sharom, Law lecturer

Kua Kia Soong, Author, educator and human rights activist



Dong Zong: Gov’t must act against don, ex-judge
2:28PM May 14, 2013
Chinese education group Dong Zong has called for legal action against the UiTM pro-chancellor as well as a former judge who had made “racist and extremist” remarks in the wake of a poor outing for the BN in the 13th general election.
……….”We strongly protest and reprimand the extremist remarks by these two individuals. Their remarks have been highly detrimental to national unity,” Dong Zong said in a statement today.
……….”The GE13 results show that more than half of Malaysians from all ethnic backgrounds, in particular young voters, have shunned race-oriented politics, chauvinism, corruption, power abuse and other irrational social realities. They abhor the chronic violation against their rights to ethnic equality, democracy and freedom.”Dong Zong said Mohd Noor and Abdul Rahman should take heed of Umno supreme council member Saifuddin Abdullah’s warning that the party would be ‘committing political suicide’ if it leans toward right-wing groups.”This should serve as a wake-up call that singularism and racial extremism will only serve to jeopardise the interest of the nation and its people, and be eventually thrashed by the rakyat,” it added.


Malaysian Insider

Pakatan to fight ‘seditious’ calls to abolish vernacular schools, says DAP

By Ida Lim
May 14, 2013

KUALA LUMPUR, May 14 — Pakatan Rakyat (PR) will protect vernacular schools from being abolished after suggestions were made that their continued existence had affected national unity and contributed to Chinese voters overwhelmingly backing the opposition, the DAP said today.

The PR party’s secretary-general Lim Guan Eng was referring today to a recent call by Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Arshad to abolish the schools where Mandarin and Tamil are the main languages of instruction.

Lim said the Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) pro-chancellor’s remark amounted to sedition.

“Abdul Rahman’s call for the abolition of Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools in favour of a single stream school is seditious and a BN MP, Mark Koding, was even convicted of sedition in 1982 for making the very same suggestion in Parliament in 1978,” Lim said in a statement.

He said the Federal Constitution protects vernacular schools and education in the mother tongue, citing Article 152 (1) (a) and (b) of the country’s supreme law.

“For this reason, PR and DAP are ready to fight legally in courts and seek support from all Malaysians — Malay, Chinese, Indian, Iban and Kadazan — to protect Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools from being abolished by Umno supporters like Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Arshad,” the Bagan MP said.

Pakatan to fight ‘seditious’ calls to abolish vernacular schools, says DAP


Monday, May 13, 2013

Police report lodged against former DG of Education

Media Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 13th May 2013.( after lodging  a police report against former DG of Education ) 
Yesterday, while speaking at a forum on national unity, the former Director General of Education, Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Arshad, called for the closing of Chinese and Tamil schools as a measure to foster racial unity.
He claimed that mother tongue education hinders national unity. By closingthese schools, all children are then compelled to go to national schools, a move, he said, would integrate the various races in the country.
Abdul Rahman’s views were widely reported in the main Tamil papers.
Speaking to reporters
Inside the police station
Mother tongue education is recognized as a right under the constitution. Studies show that a child learns better and does well in studies if the child studies in his or her mother tongue.
Presently, there are 1291 Chinese schools with an enrolment of over 600,000, and 523 Tamil schools, with a pupil population of nearly 110,000.
Many parents send their children to Chinese or Tamil schools for cultural and religious reasons, though the commercial relevance of mother tongue education is also a factor. 
Presently, over 50,000 bumiputra students pursue their primary education in Chinese schools. The main reason for this is that the commercial world now requires one to be proficient in Mandarin.  
Malaysia is a multi-cultural, multi-religious and multi-lingual country. We need to harness this diversity as a resource.  
In 1978, Mark Koding, a Sabah MP, called for the closure of Chinese and Tamil schools while speaking in Parliament. He was charged under the Sedition Act, found guilty and was disqualified as an MP.
In light of that incident and the restiveness it had caused, a similar call by a former DG of Education is shocking. While Koding was a rabble rouser, Abdul Rahman Arshad hardly qualifies in that category.
That makes his call so dangerous. We condemn it and urge the police to take the necessary action, especially under the Sedition Act.


MY VOICE FOR THE NATION: Police report lodged against former DG of Educatio…



Don: Abolish vernacular schools for unity’s sake

Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) pro-chancellor Abdul Rahman Arshad has called for the abolition of Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools in favour of a single stream school which uses Malay-language as a medium.

NONEThis, Rahman (left) said, was for the sake of racial unity as the existence of such vernacular schools have been a barrier towards that goal.

“There were two observations in the 13th general election, one was that there is no unity in our country and another is that racism has thickened now despite unity efforts for the last 57 years since independence.

“We hope for unity but it has become clear the longer it is, the farther away we are from achieving it, and the thicker the racism,” he told a forum entitled: “GE13 post-mortem: Muslim leadership and survival”.

He said countries such as Indonesia, Philippines and Thailand had already implemented a single-language policy in the education system to better foster unity among its people.

indian ngo pc 221209 increasing tamil school student intake program posterAt the moment, he said a majority of Chinese Malaysians or Indian Malaysians only sent their children to vernacular schools and only a handful go to national schools, therefore communities are isolated.

“It would be best that we have a single stream using Malay language in order to improve unity,” he said.

Other languages okay, schools not okay’

However, he said by no means that this would mean that the Chinese or Tamil language cannot be learnt.

“(On top of Malay language), we should also give emphasise to the English language so that we can strengthen our ability in the two languages.

Also speaking at the forum which was hosted at Premiera Hotel in Kuala Lumpur were former Court of Appeals Judge Mohd Noor Abdullah, former PAS deputy president Nasharuddin Mat Isa, Himpunan Keilmuan Muslim (Hakim) fellow Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Ahmad Kamal and moderated by former Biro Tatanegara director Kamaruddin Kachar.

Mohd Noor who echoed the call for vernacular schools to become national schools, said if they refused to comply, a court order could be obtained to force their compliance.

“We can argue that all the state and federal spending for Chinese and Tamil schools are not provided for in the federal constitution,” he said, adding that such provisions are only provided for Islamic schools.

“Let all the students study in the same classroom, eat and drink in the same canteen and play on the same court or field, only then can there be national unity and integration.

“Those who do not agree are anti-unity,” he said.

Don: Abolish vernacular schools for unity’s sake



6 May 2013

Muhyiddin: BN will never close down vernacular schools

MUAR: No vernacular schools will be closed under the Barisan Nasional government.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin gave his assurance that this would not happen even if there were more teachers than pupils in the schools.

“They (the opposition) say as long as BN is in power, Chinese schools will eventually be closed down.

“I would like to tell them that as long as BN is in power, vernacular schools will remain. They are part of our education system.”

Muhyiddin, who is also education minister, said in some schools, the number of teachers even exceeded that of pupils.

“Even if there is only a pupil left, we will not close the school as long as it is still needed by the community,” he said at the launching ceremony of a new school block at SJK (C) Aik Ming in Temiang here yesterday.

Read more: Muhyiddin: BN will never close down vernacular schools – General – N


Vernacular schools not the ones causing disunity

16 April, 2012

by Norman Fernandez

The government has announced that a comprehensive review of the education system is being carried out, and a report on the review of the country’s education system will be ready in three months. The review aims to improve the standard of education and narrow the disparities in the education system. The government has also said that if there was a need to amend any policy, it may consider as long as such an amendment would not change the entire perspective of education.

Immediately (and as usual) there are those who are calling for the implementation of a single stream education system, alleging that vernacular schools are an impediment to national unity.

Immediately, there are many who are proposing a restructuring of the national education system, including the implementation of a single stream to ensure attainment of the goals of a ‘1Malaysia’. As often the case, vernacular schools and principally Chinese schools have been singled out as being the root cause for polarisation and the lack of national unity. However, to fault vernacular schools for the cause for polarisation and disunity is premised on multiple fallacies.

Proponents of a single stream education system urge the government to follow Thailand where there are no Chinese schools or in the footsteps of Singapore which has abolished vernacular schools. However, they conveniently forget that in Malaysia, vernacular education is a right guaranteed by constitution and by acts of Parliament. Vernacular education is part of the social contract.

That right ought not to be questioned and the right to vernacular education is the right of the non-Malays and cannot be compromised.

Malay parents, seeing the benefits of a Chinese education, are also the abandoning national schools for Chinese schools. If Chinese schools are indeed the root cause of disunity then questions must be asked why the Malays are beginning to see Chinese schools as schools of first choice.

Instead, they repeat the decade old polemic blaming vernacular schools for causing racial polarisation and disunity. Further, they also conveniently choose to ignore that there are also schools which are exclusively for a single race, religious schools for a particular religion, universities catering to a single race and universities with religious orientation of a single religion. Are not the existence of these schools and universities equally divisive?

What logical justification is there to call for single-stream education in primary schools and then allow divisive secondary and tertiary education?

Malaysia is unique with its multiracial, multi-cultural and multi-religious population. The role of a school is not only to create a learning atmosphere. In Malaysia, schools have an added responsibility in that it ought to be a place where students are taught to value and celebrate diversity.

Students should be taught to acknowledge and respect each other’s culture, language and religion and to be imbibed with a sense that each other’s cultural, language and religious diversities are part and parcel of our national heritage and that this uniqueness should be treasured and protected by all. Schools must inculcate multi-racialism, multi-culturalism and multi-religionism.

The question is whether the national schools are doing this.
The character of national schools have changed and they have become overtly and overwhelmingly Malay-Muslim. Malay-Muslim centred actions and policies have caused the exodus of non-Malays from the national schools.


Parti Gerakan logo

Shutting down vernacular schools for sake of unity is absurd

13 Oct 2011, 5:20 PM

Gerakan Youth Secretary General Dr Dominic Lau today condemns Datuk Seri Zahrain Hashim, an independent parliamentarian for Bayan Baru for calling to consider abolishing vernacular schools and religious schools. Dr Dominic Lau says that such idea is absurd, outdated and inconsistent with the Prime Minister’s 1Malaysia spirit which promotes unity in diversity.

“The existence of vernacular schools and religious schools is rooted in the history of Malaysia, we acknowledge and appreciate the uniqueness of Malaysian society and we thank our forefathers for striving so hard to realize vernacular schools for the sake of the younger generations to be educated using their mother tongue,” said Dr Dominic Lau.

“The right of the children to be educated with their mother tongue is protected in the Federal Constitution of Malaysia, so who is Zahrain to suggest that the rights of the children be deprived by abolishing vernacular schools and religious schools just to promote unity? There are many other ways to promote unity, abolishing different stream of schools does not guarantee unity but guarantees deprivation of mother tongue education,” he added.


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4 Responses to They keep demanding the shut down of Chinese and Tamil Primary Schools!

  1. Pingback: Utusan Malaysia leads another round of Chinese-bashing… | weehingthong

  2. Pingback: Former Courts of Appeals Judge Mohd Noor Abdullah, in his own words (English translation) by Malaysiakini | weehingthong

  3. Pingback: Pushing for a Single Stream Education System: Threatening Vernacular Schools | weehingthong

  4. Pingback: Vernacular schools besieged: All my posts on vernacular schools… | weehingthong

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