KUCHING, Aug 11: Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) holds that if Khat and Chinese calligraphy could be included as part of primary school curriculum, languages of local indigenous peoples of Sarawak should also be included.
PDP Vice President Teo Boon Siew said the Khat calligraphy issue is especially sensitive in Sarawak which has a large population of indigenous peoples.
“We have a large indigenous population here, who should protect their rights and ways of life?”
“If Jawi, Chinese and Tamil calligraphy are to retain as art and culture, as shown in the textbook presented by (DAP supremo) Lim (Kit Siang) , why isn’t the languages of our indigenous peoples included as well?” said Teo in a statement today.
He said elected representatives should also help this segment of Malaysia preserve their cultures.
He believed the khat calligraphy controversy is a major and disappointing reflection of the DAP’s inaptitude at relating the concerns and opinions of the public for fruitful and inclusive decision making in the Pakatan Harapan (PH) cabinet.
“Their elected representatives have indeed fallen far short of the rakyat’s faith in them,” said Teo.
He expressed surprise that Lim even had the audacity to defend and rationalise the inclusion of Khat calligraphy module in the existing primary school textbooks.
Teo who is also PDP Dudong branch chairman said despite claims of PH that it has been implementing relevant education polices, what the coalition has managed to do was “earn the consternation of the people” and the introduction of Khat in primary school curriculum was not the first one.
He said PH representatives must stop basking in the limelight of being political leaders, earning high salaries and forgetting their obligations to the people.
“They have failed to put themselves in the shoes of the communities they claim to represent. Especially so with regards to the khat calligraphy issue, as the Ministry of Education clearly does not care about what’s in the hearts of the people and how the decision can destroy our precious social unity.”
“The state legislators of Sarawak should remember that their true masters are the voters, not the federal government,” said Teo. — DayakDaily