KOTA KINABALU: Women leaders in Sabah and Sarawak were urged today to jointly demand that schoolchildren be taught about the formation of Malaysia and a chapter on the topic be included in the national education syllabus.
Upko Wanita leader Juliana Jani said an acute lack of understanding of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 was the reason that Pasir Salak MP Tajuddin Abdul Rahman of Umno had recently claimed Malaysia to be a Malay land.
She said a dedicated chapter on Malaysia’s formation would clarify misconceptions and “rectify all the wrongs and misleading” historical information that existed.
Priority should be given towards including lessons on Malaysia’s formation as part of the education syllabus at all levels.
“For example, the current history book states Malaysia achieved independence on Aug 31, 1957 but this was actually the date of Malaya’s independence. Malaysia only existed on Sept 16, 1963,” she said.
Jani’s statement comes in the wake of Upko party president Wilfred Madius Tangau criticising Tajuddin for being historically and factually wrong.
Tajuddin told Dewan Rakyat last Monday that the rights of Malays should not be questioned, and that they were the original people of Malaysia. He had made similar remarks in July 2018 when debating with DAP’s Kota Melaka MP Khoo Poay Tiong.
Jani described Tajuddin’s statement as detrimental to nation building.
She said learning in detail about the historical background of Malaysia by referring to the facts of the Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC) and MA63 will produce more inclusive politicians.
“History will ensure no more misleading statements like those from Tajuddin and we will have more inclusive politicians,” she said.