Sekat: Put off Jawi lesson or nationwide school skipping protests will be planned

Arun (third left) handing over the petition calling for the postponement of the introduction of Jawi in primary schools to Dr Azhar.

Follow and subscribe to DayakDaily on Telegram for faster news updates.

By Lian Cheng

KUCHING, Nov 1: Seni Khat Action Team (Sekat) will call on all parents to withhold their children from going to school for a day as a last resort to protest against the Ministry of Education (MoE) for bulldozing the introduction of Jawi lesson comes next school year.

Sekat national secretary Arun Dorasamy has urged the MoE to postpone the introduction of Jawi lesson in primary schools and engaged with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) as well as parents to discuss further on the matter before Sekat takes drastic action such as filing a judicial review against MoE or calling all parents to refrain their children from going to school for one day.

“We will definitely call for one day of skipping school, asking parents to withhold their kids from attending schools. It is a sign of protest.

“All I am asking is, let us meet. Listen to what Sarawak wants to say, Sabah wants to say,” he told a press conference after meeting with Sarawak Education Department director Dr Azhar Ahmad today at the Sarawak Education Department here.

On how confident he was that all parents nationwide would heed his bid, Arun said the issue was “still up and and going”.

“Just because the media doesn’t cover, it doesn’t mean that the issue is solved. A lot of parents especially the Indian and Chinese parents still think it is (a) big (issue).

“In Sarawak and Sabah, the awareness is still limited. But we think if we go with that (calling all parents to not send their children to school for one day), we will then create a lot of awareness,” he added.

Arun’s rational for the postponement of the Jawi lesson policy was that no one has a clear idea about the new syllabus including the implementors such as Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik and Deputy Education Minister Teo Nie Ching.

“First of all, we don’t have enough information about the whole Jawi (syllabus). MoE is not ready. They do not know what is going to happen in Primary Five, they don’t know what is going to happen in Primary Six, and Form One, Form Two.

“So when all these are not clear, why ask me to agree? I don’t know yet. I have no information to say yes or no.

“We are not opposing to Jawi. I do not know and I have a lot of distrust. I have doubt about Islam agenda. I may be wrong, explain to me,” stressed Arun who put himself in the shoes of the parents affected.

He also questioned the rational of MoE bulldozing through the new policy of introducing Jawi in primary school syllabus.

“Why not postpone and discuss first? And why put it in Malay language lesson which is a compulsory pass subject at all levels?”

He pointed out that people were now having trust issue with the federal government after it treated its election manifesto lightly with no sincerity to honour it.

“There has been a deficit of trust. We don’t trust MoE really. Three pages or 30 pages, we don’t care, because three pages can be 30 pages tomorrow,” he criticised.

Arun warned MoE that the issue will not go away, instead it will continue to linger on despite no more media reports.— DayakDaily