Challenge MIC to support the building of the nation’s first Tamil secondary school
On March 24, Education Minister II Datuk Idris Jusoh came to Parliament to reply to education issues raised by MPs during their debates on the Royal Address.
I had taken the opportunity to pursue on the question of Penang government’s request to the federal government build a Tamil secondary school.
The Minister replied that the 1996 Education provides for the building of secondary schools which will have to use the national education syllabus and Bahasa Malaysia as the medium of instruction.
His answer means that unless amendment is made to the Education Act, a Tamil secondary school cannot be built.
On Jan 8, Education Department director-general Datuk Dr Khair Mohamad Yusof has also written to Penang state government stating that there is no provision under the Education Act 1996 for the setting up Tamil secondary schools.
The letter stated that the Act only provides for national secondary schools to cater to the education needs of all races in the country.
Since the Penang state government has offered to set aside a piece of land for the building of the school, the only obstacle now is the nod from the Federal government as education matter is under the federal government.
Any law can be amended in Parliament and so the Act itself cannot be an obstacle.
I therefore challenge MIC to support the building of the nation’s first Tamil secondary school by proposing in the Cabinet that the necessary changes be made to the 1996 Education Act so as to remove the excuse used by BN government to reject the building of a Tamil secondary school in Butterworth.
DAP is only asking for one Tamil secondary school in the country and the location is Bagan Dalam in Butterworth as the Indian community makes up 24% of the total constituents.
DAP and Pakatan Rakyat MPs will give full support to the necessary changes if they are tabled in Parliament.
The question is can MIC deliver ?
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib has often talked about “Nambikei” and MIC leaders have always promised that BN will do their utmost for the Indian community.
Let’s see if BN government can walk the talk on their promises and take the necessary steps to amend the necessary changes to the 1996 Education Act to allow the building of the nation’s first Tamil secondary school.