SEPANG: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir said it is up to the police to decide whether the United Chinese School Committees’ Association, Dong Zong, should be banned or not.
He said the organisation would be foul of the law if it kept on instigating and inciting people to fight against each other.
“We have freedom of speech but we are always sensitive of not instigating people from different races to fight against each other.
“But Dong Zong is only talking about one community, forgetting that this is a multiracial country,” he said when asked about an online petition, launched by the Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s Youth wing, calling for the Chinese educationist group to be banned.
According to media reports, the petition came in the wake of a petition launched by Dong Zong on Sunday to oppose the teaching of Jawi calligraphy in vernacular schools.
Speaking to reporters at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport’s (KLIA) 21st anniversary celebration here yesterday, Dr Mahathir also reiterated his statement on Monday that Dong Zong was a racist organisation, saying it has never fought for Malaysia as a whole, except for one race in this country.
“This is a multiracial country, you must think also about the feelings of other people. When we do something we should think what would the other races say.
“If they are not happy, then you should try to accommodate,” he said.
Dr Mahathir recalled that when he proposed that Malaysia should have the Wawasan School to bring people together, Dong Zong objected to that idea, as it meant that Chinese students would mix with other races.
“It is a very racist way of thinking. What’s wrong with Malays, Chinese and others going to school together. When I was in school there were all races, Bengali were there, Indians were there, Chinese were there.
“It was okay, but according to Dong Zong they must not even get near each other, to have an assembly where all three schools will be together. It is a racist organisation devoted entirely to racial defence of its own community,” he said.
Meanwhile, asked about Human Resource Minister M. Kula Segaran’s call for action to be taken against controversial preacher Zakir Naik for questioning the loyalty of Hindus in Malaysia, Dr Mahathir said the problem the government faced was that he cannot be sent back for fear of being killed.
“So he’s here today, but if any country wants to have him, they are welcome,” he said.
Asked about Zakir’s recent talk in which he claimed that Hindus in Malaysia are more loyal to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi than him, Dr Mahathir said: “You can ask them (Hindus) la, why do you ask me? How would I know?”. — Bernama