Our toilets an embarrassment, says Dr M as civics makes a comeback in schools

Ian Hariz Amsyar, from SK Taman Megah, greets Dr Mahathir Mohamad in Putrajaya today.

PUTRAJAYA: Dr Mahathir Mohamad today spoke briefly on toilet habits in the country during an event to launch the re-introduction of civic lessons in schools.

He said public toilets in Malaysia are dirty, adding that this shows the state of civic-mindedness among the people.

“I feel very embarrassed when I inspect public toilets in Malaysia. Most of the time, they are filthy and stinking,” the prime minister said at the event today attended by Education Minister Maszlee Malik and his deputy Teo Nie Ching.

He blamed this on a lack of civic responsibility, saying many could not be bothered to keep toilets clean.

Mahathir said public toilets in many other countries are much cleaner because people there value the rights of other users.

“So they will ensure cleanliness and they won’t dirty the toilets.”

The education ministry re-introduced civic education for pre-schools, primary and secondary schools nationwide in June.

The subject was started in the 1960s but was no longer taught by the 1990s.

The civic education class will take up an hour in the fourth week of every month during the teaching of Bahasa Melayu, English, Islamic Education, Moral Education and History, as well as during assembly and co-curricular activities.