Datuk Seri Utama Mohamad Hassan said today in a media release from UMNO that vernacular schools are very much part of multicultural Malaysia and were a necessity.
“UMNO as a party respects and understands the continual need for such schools. It is UMNO’s view that vernacular should need to exist.”, he added.
He was commenting on the recent statement by Nazri Aziz that vernacular schools should be abolished if they do not agree with the special rights given to Malays. Nazri received strong backlash on his speech. He had since held a press conference strongly denying that he wanted vernacular schools to be shut down.
He said such allegations are a ploy to turn voters against Barisan in the Semenyih by-election.
“In my speech, I said if non-bumiputras argue bumiputra rights, then bumiputras will also argue non-bumi rights, including their rights to vernacular education,” Nazri said.
Nazri said he was using the call to shut down vernacular schools as an example, and he was not advocating the abolition of vernacular schools.
Mohamad Hassan cited that whether administering the government or as the opposition UMNO or Barisan Nasional’s stand on vernacular schools is clear whether in support on infrastructure, acknowledgement or providing financial support.
Pakatan Harapan has been playing up racial issues leading up to the Semenyih by election where Barisan Nasional is expected to repeat its performance from Cameron Highlands.