Malaysiakini published fake news, says Moorthy

(FMT) – Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department P Waytha Moorthy today denied speaking to a news portal about khat lessons in Tamil schools, saying he never spoke to its journalists or issued any statement to the portal in question.

He said the report, carried by Malaysiakini, was “false” and “ill intended”.

“(I) did not speak with Malaysiakini or any of its reporters or journalists on this matter,” he added in a statement today.

The report yesterday said Waytha, who is the minister in charge of national unity, had labelled the teaching of khat or Jawi calligraphy in Tamil schools as unrealistic and unnecessary.

He was reported as saying that the government should instead find ways to reduce the burden on schoolchildren, while looking into other skills and tackling problems such as unemployment among graduates.

According to the report, he also claimed that many other ministers similarly disagreed with the education ministry’s decision to introduce khat lessons in the Year 4 Bahasa Melayu syllabus for vernacular schools next year.

The ministry initially said that six pages of the Bahasa Melayu textbook would be dedicated to the teaching of khat. However, this was reduced to three following protests from Chinese and Tamil interest groups and members of DAP.

Lessons will also be optional, with no examination component.