Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Najib failed to walk the talk on Chinese schools

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 15 — It was pointless for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to sing praises of independent Chinese schools if he’s not backing it up with concrete action, DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang said today.

Lim told a press conference in Parliament that while Najib proudly declared the independently-financed schools as “national assets”, he has not indicated the federal government’s willingness to “institutionalise support” for them.

The Ipoh Timur MP also said Najib was silent when it comes to recognising the United Examination Certificate, the independent schools’ version of the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia examinations used for government schools.

Najib made the statement at the Chong Hwa Independent High School’s 90th anniversary dinner last night. It was given front page coverage by the Chinese press today.

“There was neither announcement of recognition of the Unified Examination Certificate which is recognised by reputable universities worldwide or concrete action..to institutionalise government support and funding for the 60 Chinese independent schools (nationwide),” commented Lim on Najib’s statement.

“It will be most regrettable if all this is just for propaganda to score political points without any political will to translate them into government policies and practices,” added the Ipoh Timur MP.

The opposition, especially the DAP, have long decried the lack of support by the government towards independent schools and many of them believe the reasons behind it are racist and political.

Independent Chinese schools on the other hand have been accused by the ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN) of being breeding grounds for the opposition but the government denies neglecting them.

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