BN secretary-general Nazri Abdul Aziz’s statement on vernacular schools is merely his personal view and does not represent that of Umno, the party's acting president Mohamad Hasan said.
He said Umno respects the need for vernacular schools, holding the view that such schools should continue to exist in Malaysia, and stressed that this has been a consistent stance within Umno and BN.
“I hope this issue will not be politicised irresponsibly by any party, especially in a manner that doesn’t reflect the true position of Umno and BN,” Mohamad (photo, above) said in a statement last night.
Malaysiakini quoted Nazri as warning that non-Malays should not question Malay privileges as it could lead to Malays questioning non-Malay privileges, such as by calling for vernacular schools to be shut down.
For the record, Malaysiakini did not quote Nazri (photo) himself calling for vernacular schools to be shut down.
Mohamad said Umno and BN celebrate the ethnic diversity of Malaysia, including the right to religion and to obtain a proper education.
“This is the character and key feature of our plural society. Moreover, mutual understanding and celebrating diversity are what made Umno and BN strong all this while.
“Even when running the government, the positions of Umno and BN in relation to vernacular schools can be seen clearly in the form of infrastructure support, recognition and provision of funding,” Mohamad said.