Wee: Teaching of khat next year different from 2012's plan

  • Nation
  • Saturday, 10 Aug 2019

PETALING JAYA: Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong (pic) has refuted Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's statement that the teaching of khat was the same as what was introduced in 2012.

The MCA president said pupils were now exposed to the calligraphy of various groups, including khat in the Year Five Bahasa Melayu textbook.

"What's going to be implemented is the teaching of khat calligraphy in Year Four, Five and Six's syllabuses.

"They are totally different," he said on his Facebook on Saturday (Aug 10).

Dr Wee was commenting on Dr Mahathir's statement on Thursday (Aug 8) that he was surprised at the outburst over the introduction of the Jawi calligraphy in the Year Four syllabus in 2020.

The Prime Minister said it had actually been decided in 2012 and the topic was included in a school textbook. As such, he could not comprehend "why it is an issue now" but not back then.

Dr Mahathir also said he suspected that certain quarters, including politicians and media outlets, were attempting to use the issue.

Dr Wee, who is Ayer Hitam MP, said according to the Standard Curriculum and Assessment Document (DSKP) released in April last year, pupils would learn Malay proverbs through an interactive and fun method, which was khat calligraphy.

"This is a stark difference from what is being taught in the introduction of the calligraphy of various groups in Year Five now.

"Also, during the ministry question-and-answer on Aug 6, it was clearly stated that Bahasa Melayu syllabus for Year Five and Six would also include khat, minus the details on how it would be taught," he added.

Although the Education Ministry had announced its decision over the issue, Dr Wee said many details and questions still needed to be addressed.

"One cannot blame the Chinese community for objecting to it now and not before this," he said.

Dr Wee said Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik and Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng had both misinformed Dr Mahathir on the issue, causing him to think that certain politicians and media had purposely played up the issue.

"Besides, it has been DAP's way to push the blame on to the previous administration," he added.

"Pakatan has been governing for over 450 days. The textbooks for next year have yet to be printed. Is this the fault of the previous government as well?

"If MCA, together with Chinese guilds and organisations, could successfully stop the government's plan to standardise Bahasa Melayu textbooks for all schools in the past, why has DAP, the party with 42 federal seats, failed to voice out for the Chinese community?" he asked.
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