Editor’s Note: The above main pic and video below are recorded from tahfiz school Sekolah Integrasi Teras Islam Padang Terap in Kedah.
AS PAS and its ally Bersatu are drumming up the Himpunan 10k Solidariti Palestine (10k Palestine Solidarity Rally) this afternoon (Oct 28) at the KLCC Mosque in Kuala Lumpur, sensible Malaysians have expressed disgust over the unimaginable directive by the Education Ministry to hold the Solidarity Week with Palestine in schools.
Leading the chorus is social activist-cum-lawyer Siti Kasim who expressed utmost concern that school compounds can soon be a breeding ground to groom future militants.
“Are we training Jihadists now in our schools? What’s with the weapons and all? Looks like the teacher is pretty proud of herself. I am not sure if their parents are aware of this,” she lambasted in a Facebook post.
“This is sick! Totally and utterly disgusting. By the way, do you all know what PPKI schools stand for? It stands for Program Pendidikan Khas Integrasi which means these schools are for special needs children. Just imagine… 😕”
Malay netizen @thaqibskaer opined that the method construed by the Education Ministry to spark awareness about the situation in Palestine among schoolchildren is flawed to begin with.
“We should have done it in a more general manner so as to woo the participation of non-Malay pupils as well,” opined he netizen in a TikTok video post.
“What they should have done is to channel information on the history of the Palestinian struggle or territories that have been under seized like Chechnya or Sri Lanka and not limited to Palestine only for we’ve to support oppressed nations without considering their ethnicity and religion but solely on humanitarian grounds.
“Or they can ask pupils to give suggestions as to how we can help the oppressed parties or to encourage the pupils to think or compose peace-themed poems as opposed to the staging of ala-militant training activity complete with fake weapons.”
However, the Education Ministry (MOE) is not backing down on its directive to all schools and colleges to organise the Palestinian Solidarity Week which will kick off tomorrow (Oct 29) despite criticism from many quarters.
In a statement, the ministry defended the planned programme by insisting that it is in line with the government’s civic education syllabus despite acknowledging that “there have been elements of extremism” as some schools failed to adhere to its guidelines.
“MOE does not compromise with any form of extremist activity extremism during the Solidarity Week with Palestine programme period. The use of replica weapons, icons and symbols containing elements of provocation as well as confrontation is not allowed at all,” it warned in a statement.
This aside, the MOE viewed the event as an extension of the civic education syllabus to instill humanitarian values such as respect, compassion and responsibility.
“The programme aims to educate students on human rights and compassion for others. This includes fostering attitudes of empathy and concern for the suffering of others regardless of their nationality, religion or social status,” added. – Oct 28, 2023