KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 8 — Deputy Education Minister Teo Nie Ching today said that police merely advised SMK Bandar Puchong (1) to remove its Chinese New Year decoration in order to ensure the situation does not escalate further.
Teo was asked if police had indeed told the school to remove the decoration following claims that there were complaints from parents and threats from Parti Bumiputera Perkasa Malaysia (Putra) vice-president Mohd Khairul Azam Abdul Aziz, to which she said the school was only advised to do so.
“It was advice from the police,” said Teo when asked by reporters.
“But I think after a full investigation, we upheld the principle that a school is a place where we can celebrate all kinds of festivals, and after investigations, it was deemed the decoration cannot be a threat to any other religion or race.”
Teo was then pressed if the police had indeed issued official instructions for the school to take down the decoration, to which she said: “It’s not orders, just advice so the issue won’t escalate. After consultations and proper investigations, this is the stand we are taking and this is the stand of the government.”
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ismail led a delegation of ministers, deputy ministers, and lawmakers today to visit SMK Pusat Bandar Puchong (1) this evening, following alleged complaints against its Chinese New Year decoration.
Those present included Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah, Communications Minister and Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo, Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, de facto religious minister Datuk Mujahid Yusof Rawa, and Water, Land and Natural Resources Minister Datuk Xavier Jeyakumar.
The ministers took turns signing several Chinese lanterns that were sponsored by the Kinrara state assemblyman Ng Sze Han, who was also in attendance.