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Date: 09 Dec 1999
Time: 20:14:22


Malaysian opposition to streamline kindergartens based on Islam

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 9 (AFP) - A Malaysian opposition party plans to change kindergarten education along Islamic lines in the state it won in the country's national elections, the official Bernama news agency reported Thursday. It quoted Harun Taib, head of the Terengganu education, missionary and Islamic laws implementation committee, as saying kindergartens would be streamlined from next month following the victory by the Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS).

All kindergarden teachers will be given training in line with the Islamic education system so that "they put less emphasis on songs and more on reciting holy verses and religious songs," Harun said.

The move was in line with the government's aim of creating a moral and religious generation, and would not deviate from the original aim of preparing children as school-goers, he added.

Harun also said any plans by PAS to impose Sharia laws in the northeastern state would be subjected to the federal constitution.

PAS captured the Terengganu state assembly in November 29 polls and retained neighbouring Kelantan, which it has ruled since 1990. It also more than tripled its parliamentary presence to 27.

Since coming into power in Terengganu, it has abolised bridge tolls and taxes on residential properties. It also plans to halt gambling, limit alcohol sales and shut down entertainment centres in the state.

But a proposal to impose a religious-based tax on non-Muslim businesses has met a storm of protest.

Chinese-dominated parties from ruling and opposition camps have warned the Islamic party to scrap its plan, saying it was a burden to non-Muslims and would scare off investors.

PAS national president Fadzil Noor has defended the move, saying it was aimed at correcting the imbalance in taxes paid by Muslims -- who were liable to tithes -- and non-Muslims.

Fadzil has been appointed as the new opposition leader in parliament.

+ tindakan PAS ini wajar untuk melahirkan generasi muda yang cintakan ugama. Bak kata pepatah melayu, kalau nak dilentur buluh biarlah dari rebungnya.

Last changed: December 09, 1999