Malays may react to anti-Jawi congress – Mahathir

by BERNAMA/ pic by TMR

TUN Dr Mahathir Mohamad (picture) has cautioned of repercussions if Chinese education group Dong Jiao Zong goes ahead with a planned congress over the teaching of Jawi script in vernacular schools.

The prime minister said this may result in the Malays organising their own congress to talk about closing down Chinese vernacular schools.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the Kuala Lumpur Summit (KL Summit) 2019 here today, he underscored that in this multiracial country, it is important for all sides to be considerate towards other people’s sentiments.

Queried whether the congress should be stopped, Dr Mahathir, who is KL Summit chairman, responded: “This is a free country which allows freedom of speech.

“But we also have to be sensitive towards other races living in this country. If you start making attacks against the other races or going against the constitution, the end result will be chaos, instability and everybody will be poor and we will see a lot of Malaysians migrating to other countries.”

Dr Mahathir also warned about the impact of people going against each other.

“If you do this, like in many countries, they take to the streets and fight each other, throw tear gas and all that. If you want Malaysia to be like that, go ahead,” the prime minister said.

Amid objections over the teaching of Jawi script in vernacular schools, the High Court in George Town ruled last month that the Jawi script is part of Bahasa Malaysia, the national language, and can be taught in Chinese and Tamil schools.