He says there is a need to go back to how the country was originally envisioned to be — a secular country where politics and religion are kept separate.
KUALA LUMPUR: Gerakan has urged the government to review the policies of government-funded religious schools.
According to Gerakan vice-president Dominic Lau Hoe Chai, it is religious schools and not vernacular schools that are likely to threaten unity in the country.
He based this claim on the government’s own education blueprint which stated that government-funded religious schools only had Bumiputera students.
“At least in Chinese schools, we have a 12% non-Chinese student base,” he said at a press conference at the Gerakan headquarters here today.
He also claimed religious schools had the tendency to produce people with a more extremist interpretation of Islam.
“Through our own analysis, we have found that while not all the students ended up having extremist views, there is a tendency to produce some with this kind of thinking.”
He stressed he was not calling for the abolition of religious schools.
“We need to go back to how the country was originally envisioned to be — a secular country where politics and religion are kept separate.
“The reason we have problems like the unilateral conversion of children in this country is because we’ve moved away from this vision of a secular country.”