“Learning Jawi to be a Malaysian” not my words: Kit Siang

Media Statement by DAP MP for Iskandar Puteri Lim Kit Siang in Bangalore on Monday, 5th August 2019:

I have never said that one must learn Jawi to be a Malaysian – all I said was learning Jawi did not “make me any less of a Chinese, and may have helped in making me more of a Malaysian”

A friend has sent me a newspaper headline which quoted me as saying: “Learn Jawi To Be More Malaysian”.

I have never said one must learn Jawi to be a Malaysian – all I said in my statement from Salem, Tamil Nadu yesterday was learning Jawi while I was serving my first detention in Muar in 1969 did not “make me any less of a Chinese, and may have helped in making me more of a Malaysian”.

Malaysia is a multi-racial, multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-religious nation and we should leverage on our unique position where the great Islamic, Chinese, Indian and Western civilisations meet in confluence in Malaysia to build a great Malaysian nation.

We must be careful not to fall into the trap of conspirators who want to pit race against race, religion against religion to arouse suspicion, distrust and hatred in our plural society to regain political power and work against the flowering of the best of our multi-racial, multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-religious nation.

Just as a Malay who can speak and write in Chinese does not make him or her less of a Malay in Malaysia, a Chinese who knows Jawi does not make him or her less of a Malaysian Chinese. Probably, the additional acquisition of another language make him or her a better Malaysian – but there must be no compulsion in the learning of another tongue!

In Chennai and Salem, I had referred to the OECD Economic Survey on Malaysia July 2019 which made four key recommendations for educational reform in Malaysia, viz:

· Lower the school starting age to at least 5 and make secondary schooling compulsory.

· Provide incentives and implement rotation schemes to attract more qualified and experienced teachers to disadvantaged schools.

· Continue efforts to reduce teacher administrative workload so that teachers can spend more time preparing lessons or participating in mentoring or professional development activities.

· Adopt a more student-centred teaching approach and put more emphasis on developing communicational skills.

I said that “the pressing importance in Malaysia with regard to education” is to introduce reforms so that Malaysian students in international assessments, whether in TIMSS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study) or PISA (Programme for International Students Assessment) can attain above global average results and be ranked in the top one-third of world countries instead of being placed in the lower one-third bracket as is the position today.

We should be discussing educational reform proposals to make Malaysia a top world-class nation in education.

LIM KIT SIANG

Media statement on Sdr Kit Siang’s blog:


吉祥促警惕族群对立,否认说学爪文才能当大马人

民主行动党资深领袖林吉祥同志澄清,不曾说必须学习爪夷文才能成为马来西亚人,并呼吁民众勿掉入族群和宗教对立的陷阱。

林同志早前发文告称学习爪夷文不会损害华裔特质,更有益国民团结。此说法引起热议。

他今天发文告指出,有朋友传发一篇新闻头条,报道引述其言论称“学习爪夷文,以更像马来西亚人。”

他澄清说,不曾主张学习爪夷文才能成为马来西亚人。

“我昨天从印度泰米尔纳德邦的塞勒姆发文告说,我首次于1969年在内安法令下被扣留期间自学爪夷文,这没有令我减少华人特质,或许反而让我更像个马来西亚人。”

别掉入阴谋家的陷阱

林同志指出,马来西亚是个多元种族、语言、文化和宗教的国家,因此应该利用伊斯兰、华夏文明、印度文明和西方文明交汇的独特地位,铸造伟大的马来西亚国家。

“我们必须要小心,别掉入阴谋家的陷阱。他们要挑起族群和宗教之间的对抗,在我们多元社会里引起怀疑、不信任和仇恨,以重夺政权和阻碍我国的多元种族、语言、文化和宗教展现其最好的一面。”

“正如,马来人不会因为懂得说和写中文,而在马来西亚变得比较不像马来人,一名掌握爪夷文的华人不会变得不像一名马来西亚华裔。”

“也许,额外掌握另一种语文反而会让他或她成为更好的马来西亚人,但必须不能强迫学习其它的语言。”

促讨论教育改革建议

林同志表示,早前在真奈和塞勒姆发文告时,曾引用经济合作与发展组织(OECD)今年7月对马来西亚的经济调查,而该项报告就马来西亚的教育改革,共提出4项关键的建议。

有关建议包括了:降低入学年龄到至少5岁及强制上中学、提供激励配套以及实施轮换制,以吸引更多具有学历和经验的教师到条件差劣的学校去、继续减少老师的行政工作负担,以便他们可以花更多时间备课、参与辅导或专业发展活动、采用更以学生为中心的教学法和更注重发展沟通技巧。

他认为,马来西亚最迫切的教育重点是落实改革,以便马来西亚学生能够在国际评估,无论是国际数理教学趋势(TIMSS)或国际学生检测计划(PISA)取得高于全球平均的成绩,同时高居前三分一的排名,而不是屈居最后三分一的排名。

“我们应该讨论,教育改革的建议,以让马来西亚成为一流教育的国家。”

文稿来自当今大马:https://www.malaysiakini.com/news/486710