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Our concerns on tahfiz schools viewed as interference, says Putrajaya

 | September 14, 2017

Ahmad Zahid Hamidi speaks out following revelation that the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah tahfiz school had been operating without a permit.

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ahmad-zahid-hamidi-kebakaran-tahfiz-1SIBU: Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has spoken out against the weaknesses in the administration of tahfiz schools in the country after an early morning fire in the city killed 21 students and two teachers in the worst tragedy involving such schools.

“This is not the first time. We are very concerned. We know that every two or three years, there is such an incident involving fire or building collapse, just like in this school,” Zahid told Bernama.

His remarks come after a revelation that the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah tahfiz school in Keramat, Kuala Lumpur, is not registered with the relevant authorities, including the education ministry.

Zahid said the federal government had agreed to let state authorities handle issues related to religion, including religious schools, but added that their concerns over the manner these schools were being administered have always been viewed with suspicion.

“We see the level of security or standard operating procedures in schools not followed or compromised, but (they) view our monitoring as an interference in their administration,” Zahid was quoted as saying by Bernama during a working visit to Sarawak.

The fire ripped through the top floor of the school’s three-storey building in Jalan Keramat Ujung, Kuala Lumpur, at dawn today.

Kuala Lumpur Fire and Rescue Department chief Khirudin Drahman said the incident was the country’s worst fire disaster in two decades.

Police said the school management was being investigated over allegations that the building has no valid permit.

Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Noh Omar had earlier confirmed that the school did not have a valid permit from the fire department.

“The school had submitted the architectural plan to the department.

“However, the department had not given the school permission to use the building,” he said, but added that no action would be taken as the school has “suffered enough”.


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