Reconsider the directive to hold Palestine Solidarity Week in schools, Ministry told
27 October 2023
By Wartawan Nabalu News
KOTA KINABALU: The United Progressive Kinabalu Organization (UPKO) Youth has requested the Ministry of Education Malaysia (KPM) to reconsider the directive to implement Palestine Solidarity Week in educational institutions under KPM.
Its leader, Felix Joseph Saang, said this is important because there is concern among the public, especially parents, about the impact on school students when they are exposed to 'violence' as depicted in social media.
"We should educate our students to pray for global peace regardless of religious beliefs. Solidarity through prayer is more meaningful.
"What we want is for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to be immediately stopped. We continue to pray for the people of Palestine and the people of Israel.
"Therefore, I hope KPM can reconsider the circular to preserve harmony and security by taking into account the sensitivities of the diverse communities and religions in this country," he said in a statement here today.
He made these remarks in response to a viral video on social media regarding activities during Palestine Solidarity Week held in schools.
Felix said that as a parent, he does not want to teach his child about hatred.
"Schools are a place where we teach and educate our children about pure values good things as taught in subjects like Moral Education. We should focus on promoting peace, empathy, and understanding among students," he added.
The UPKO Youth leader emphasised the importance of creating a conducive learning environment that fosters inclusivity and respect for different perspectives.
He expressed concern that the portrayal of violence during Palestine Solidarity Week activities could potentially fuel animosity and hinder the development of harmonious relationships among students.
Felix urged the Ministry of Education to review the directive and explore alternative approaches to promoting solidarity with Palestine that are more educational and promote peaceful coexistence.
He suggested that emphasizing the power of prayer and encouraging students to understand the historical and political context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict could be more effective in nurturing empathy and fostering a sense of global responsibility.
He concluded by stating that the ultimate goal should be to cultivate a generation of compassionate individuals who are equipped with the knowledge and skills to contribute positively to society and strive for a peaceful world.