By ZULKIFLI JALIL
Dong Zong sparks an issue yet again. The people are still in the dark of its motive. But it seems that Dong Zong is getting more aggressive and serious.
The Affiliation of the Malaysian Chinese School Committees, popularly known as Dong Zong, is becoming big headed. In one of its demand, Dong Zong wants the Ministry of Education those who can’t speak Mandarin, sent to SJKC early this year, to be transferred out immediately. This includes Bahasa Melayu and English teachers.
This writer interviewed former Director-General of Education, Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Arshad who is currently Chancellor of University College Sedaya International (UCSI) and Prof Emeritus Khoo Kay Kim, on the action by Dong Zong in organising a mass protest gathering in Kajang recently:
“It is very clear that Dong Zong refuses to accept non-Chinese in SJKC. I am surprise with this attitude. How is that a Malay and an Indian who teach Bahasa Melayu and English in SJKC can speak Mandarin.
Before, when we take teachers to teach English, they are not Englishmen, even in Malay schools.
It seems that the antic of Dong Zong is just to deny the non-Chinese from teaching in SJKC. Is this not a waste if a teacher who knows Mandarin to teach Bahasa Melayu.
I find that the end result of Dong Zong’s action is that it will widen the racial gap. Our issue now is unity. Unity means, all races must interact with each other. Will it work if the Chinese school is confine to the Chinese alone?
Those who are good in Geography teach Geography and those who are good in Bahasa Melayu teach Bahasa Melayu. What are all these Dong Zong? Are you refusing other races in SJKC?
What I can draw is that Dong Zong refuses to have other races in SJKC. I do not wish to link this with politics and with the 13th General Election just around the corner.
There was never any demand as ridiculous as this. If we are to entertain Dong Zong, then we have to accede to request of the Tamil Type National School on similar ground. In Sarawak, those who teach Bahasa Melayu need to speak in Iban language. What if we are to apply the same rule for national schools?
The public can judge for themselves what Dong Zong is up to and it goes against the national language policy which emphasis on solidarity.
Kata Khoo Kay Kim:
“This (demands by Dong Zong) is a hot topic in politic. Only politics have its own wish. We do not know what they really want.
I have been criticised by UMNO politicians for requesting that the Razak Report be implemented because the report at the outset already mention about the main objective of the National Education Policy – that is national unity. But UMNO politicians did not agree. So what to do?
And the Chinese daily often criticised me. It is really difficult. How are we going to build a united nation? To me, every citizen must know how to speak Bahasa Melayu.
I would like to draw the attention that Malaysia is the only country in the world which has vernacular school. Even in Singapore, there is no Chinese school.
Mandarin is not even the national language. The action of Dong Zong I think because they want Malaysia to be a plural society. Every race remains by itself. We already existed as a nation state, how can they want the situation to be reverted? They even do not know what citizenship is.
Now, we are the Chinese in Malaysia not in China. We are already Malaysian, right?
Actually the term nationality at one time also means race. But after the Second World War, when the United Nations was formed, we translate the United Nations as Pertubuhan Bangsa-Bangsa Bersatu (PBB). The ‘bangsa’ there means nation, not race.
I would also like to remind that even in China, there is no such demand (by Dong Zong). What has been instituted by the government, it is also the national policy which must be adhered to. Even in Singapore, it is the same but it’s different in Malaysia.
However, I cannot comment on the demand by Dong Zong. This is because they hate me. What I said, they won’t agree.