KUALA LUMPUR: Umno Youth chief aspirant Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir has called on the Government to abolish the vernacular school system to enhance unity among the people.
He said a single school system was the only way to check racial polarisation.
“The Government should consider introducing only a one school system with Bahasa Malaysia as the medium of instruction, except for the teaching of Science and Mathematics, which is already in English,” Mukhriz told reporters at Parliament House yesterday.
“Of course, pupils should then be given the option to study their mother tongue. Under this system, the Malays will also have the option of studying other languages like Chinese and Tamil, and this will further boost unity among the races,” the Umno Youth exco member added.
In an immediate response in his blog (www.ongteekeat.net), MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat made a very short posting on the subject.
“Datuk Mukhriz is just one of the many who are now repeating the same polemics that are a few decades old, simply because of the advent of their party’s poll.
“It is saddening because politicians cannot think out of the box,” he said.
Earlier, Mukhriz said it was time Malaysia did away with the dual school system, which was practised by only a handful of countries in the world.
He expressed hope that the leaders of Barisan Nasional component parties would not view his suggestion in a negative light as it was meant to resolve once and for all the problem of racial polarisation.
“If they reject this suggestion, then they should explain why they are against it,” he said. “If you want equal rights then you cannot have a different school system. You cannot have your cake and eat it too,” said Mukhriz.
He also urged all parties to stop harping on issues that could create tension among Barisan component parties, including talk of Malay supremacy.
He said there had been many statements made by leaders of component parties that had the potential to create anger among the Malays and Umno members.
“If they insist on making such statements, then do not be surprised if the Malays start talking about the economic supremacy of the non-Malays,” he added.
“Despite all that has been said on the issue of Malay supremacy, the Malays do not feel in any way superior or that they are the masters when it comes to the country’s economy.”