Government should intervene to save heritage school.

THE government should intervene in the non-extension of the Convent Bukit Nanas lease matter and grant an extension of the lease to the school as it is a historical school for women in Kuala Lumpur, established in 1899. This school has provided education for tens of thousands of Malaysian women and many eminent personalities have passed through its corridors.  

This school, in fact, more than qualifies to be listed as a national heritage site under the National Heritage Act 2005. From a planning perspective, the school is zoned under the KL City Plan 2020 within the development plan under the Federal Territory Planning Act 1982 as a public facility and as a heritage zone. Such a historical school should not only be listed as a heritage site in the KL City Plan 2020, but should also be listed as a national heritage  site under the National Heritage Act 2005. 

The protection of urban schools and public facilities is critical to justify the high development plot ratios being given in the city in order to improve the development of a strong residential community within the city centre, which is necessary to support the city’s economic activities and for sustainable development. 

Sadly, many city schools are often the target of “predatory vultures” who view this as a cheap source of land for high-intensity development, leading to many such land being developed with no good supporting infrastructure for education in the nearby vicinity.

I hope the government, through the cabinet, will immediately intervene and extend the lease for Convent Bukit Nanas. It has now become popular for all sides of the political divide to champion women’s rights in society as it creates good voter optics. However, it remains to be seen how many leaders will actually rise to the occasion where it matters most and protect Convent Bukit Nanas, and get the lease extended for an institution that has protected and enhanced women’s basic rights to education for more than 120 years.  

In other words, the right for a woman to be educated in a safe environment in an institution par excellence.

See: Fernandez, D. (2021a, April 19). Extend lease for Convent Bukit Nanas, emblem of women’s right to education. The Vibes.