KUALA LUMPUR: The iconic Bukit Nanas Convent (CBN) will not be demolished once its lease expires and the land it sits on will revert to the government so it can be gazetted as a fully-aided government school, says the Federal Territories Land and Mines Office (PPTGWP).
Its director Datuk Muhammad Yasir said the government's decision not to renew CBN's lease was to ensure that the iconic school becomes a fully-aided government school, which would enable it to receive all the benefits it needs for the future.
"Right now, CBN is partially aided and it is a very old school. It will benefit more if it was made a fully-aided government institution," Yasir added.
He said the school is located near a slope and if there was a landslide or erosion, remedial works will be borne by the government.
"This is just an example of how the school will benefit by going from being partially-aided to fully-aided, '' he said, adding that this was the only reason why the Federal Territory Land Executive Committee decided not to renew the lease.
Yasir reiterated that the CBN would remain a school and there would not be any development on the land and that there was nothing sinister about the issue (of not renewing the lease).
"However, if the school board (Lady Superior of the Society of Saint Maur) wants to continue operating the school, they can appeal to the Federal Land Commissioner who owns the land lease," he said.
"If they choose to do so, the school may not be able to enjoy the full benefits that come with being a fully aided government school, '' he said.
On April 7, the Lady Superior of the Society of Saint Maur, the corporate entity operating CBN, was granted an application for leave for judicial review to challenge the government's decision not to extend the school's land lease.
The school had written to the Land Office on October 4, 2017, to seek an extension of the land lease.
The school received a reply on Dec 18, 2020, that the lease would not be renewed.
The lease is due to expire on Sept 6, 2021, and the school is seeking a stay against the authority's decision.
The all-girls school, established in 1899 by nuns of the Sisters of the Holy Infant Jesus – an institute dedicated to the education and training of underprivileged children and the betterment of their lives – is located along Jalan Bukit Nanas, Kuala Lumpur.