• Wartawan Nabalu News

Muslim teachers group’s suit on vernacular schools dismissed by High Court


30 May 2022

By Wartawan Nabalu News


KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court in Kota Bharu, Kelantan has dismissed the suit by Ikatan Guru-Guru Muslim Malaysia who challenged the existence of vernacular schools from a constitutional point of view.


Last year, the president of the Muslim teacher's group, Azizee Hasan filed a suit to challenge the constitutionality of Sections 17 and 28 of the Education Act.


According to a report by MalaysiaKini, Lawyer T Gunaseelan said judge Roslan Abu Bakar yesterday held that the existence of vernacular schools must be read in the historical context.


“The intention of the framers of the Federal Constitution was to preserve that as part of the education system. The wishes of our forefathers were that we live in harmony,” said Roslan.


Azizee, represented by Shaharudin Ali, had named the education minister and the government as defendants.


Gunaseelan, who represented the Chinese Language Council, the Tamil Language Association and the Confederation of Former Tamil School Pupils as interveners, said the judge did not order costs as it was a public interest issue.


The MCA and the United Chinese School Committees Association of Malaysia (Dong Zong) were also allowed to become interveners.


A similar suit was also dismissed by the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Dec last year.


The suit was brought by the Federation of Peninsular Malay Students (GPMS), the Islamic Education Development Council (Mappim) and the Confederation of Malaysian Writers Association (Gapena) who sought a declaration that Sections 2, 17 and 28 of the Education Act to set up vernacular schools using Mandarin and Tamil as the main languages were inconsistent with Article 152 of the constitution.