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Photograph of Chan Boon Heng should be displayed in the offices of top Education Ministry officials, including Education Minister, Deputy Education Minister, Parliamentary Secretary, Director-General and State Directors, as constant reminder that educational neglect not only stunts national progress but literally kills
The photograph of Chan Boon Heng should be displayed in the offices of top Education Ministry officials, including the Education Minister, Deputy Education Minister, Parliamentary Secretary, Director-General and State Directors, as constant reminder that educational neglect not only stunts national progress but literally kills.
The only way to remember Chan Boon Heng is the national resolve and government commitment that there will not be another human casualty, whether teacher or pupil, whether in national, Chinese or Tamil schools, because of dilapidated and unsafe school buildings.
Some press have described the tragedy as a “freak accident”. (NST 16.9.05) Boon Heng’s death is not the result of a “freak accident” but caused by the criminal negligence of a dilapidated and unfair system of education. In fact, it is a somber symbolism of the rotting floorboards of the national education system infested with termites.
MCA President Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting said Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein had worked hard since taking over as Education Minister and visited no fewer than 40 schools, including national schools, to see if their buildings were safe.
I find this shocking as Hishammuddin is clearly not working smart..
After being Education Minister for 18 months, Hishammuddin has visited less than five per cent of the total number of primary and secondary schools in the country. Are our teachers and students only be safe if the Education Minister finds the time to visit not just some 40 schools but all the some 10,000 schools in the country?
Boon Heng’s tragedy during the National Day Month celebrations when the country is celebrating 48 years of nationhood is another painful reminder of the ugly side of nearly five decades of the national history of education development .
We do not want an Education Minister who have to visit every school in the country before our teachers and pupils are absolutely safe, but who can provide the leadership and the system to ensure that no school in the country, whether national, Chinese or Tamil, is a death trap for any teacher or student.
DAP Deputy Secretary-General and MP for Bukit Mertajam, Chong Eng has given notice for an urgent debate in Parliament on Monday on the tragic and unnecessary death of Boon Heng and the state of dilapidated and unsafe school buildings in the country which pose hazards to the lives and limbs of teachers and students.
Parliament Speaker, Tan Sri Ramli Ngah should approve an emergency debate of Chong Eng’s motion as it will give Hishammuddin, who was absent from yesterday’s Cabinet meeting, the opportunity to report to MPs and the nation on what urgent remedial actions his Ministry has taken to identify and rectify all the dilapidated and unsafe school buildings in the country.
The urgent debate can also be the occasion for Hishammuddin to give his support for the establishment of an all-party Parliamentary Select Committee on Education which will allow MPs to be directly involved in monitoring educational developments in the country, including ensuring that there will not be another Chan Boon Heng tragedy in the country.
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP
Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman