Sunday 26th Oct 2014
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LANGUAGE PROTEST IN MALAYSIA

Muslim World

Hundreds of Malaysians had taken to the streets to protest against the use of English to teach Mathematics and Science in schools. The police fired water canons and tear gas to disperse the crowd as they marched to the National Palace in downtown Kuala Lumpur despite a police barricade, in an attempt to reach the National Palace. The protest was led by opposition Islamic party president Abdul Hadi Awang, flanked by national laureate. Their aim was to deliver a request to the king to change teaching of Mathematics and Science from English back to the Malay language. The switch in languages made by the government as part of an effort to lift the standard of spoken and written English among students was done six years ago. The demonstrators claimed that the move has failed and is leading to an erosion of the Malay cultural identity. Abu Qassim Nor Azmi, of the National Union of Malaysian Muslim Students said, “Now we talk in English when we go to the canteen, and when we go out, we continue to talk in English. This will lead to a crisis of identity; we will respect English more than our own mother tongue.”


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