Was Cabinet consulted on Convent Bukit Nanas land lease issue, asks lawyer

PETALING JAYA: A lawyer has called on past and present ministers to reveal whether applications made by Convent Bukit Nanas were ever referred to them, as decisions regarding the school’s land lease would typically come with Cabinet guidance.

Derek Fernandez said the reasoning given by Federal Territory Land and Mines Office director Muhammad Yasir Yahya was “not convincing” and “(did) not make any sense”, as the department usually does not get involved in such deliberations and policy decisions.

“Such policy decisions are made by the Cabinet after input from the relevant ministers as they involve the continued role of mission schools in Malaysia,” he said in a statement.

As the school’s application to extend its land lease was submitted in October 2017 and rejected in December last year, he called on ministers involved in natural resources to reveal whether these filings ever crossed their desks.

“They should let the public know whether such an application was ever referred to them at all during their tenure, or if such a policy decision was made as the basis of rejecting the application,” he said.

Referring to comments made by Yasir about the school benefiting from being a fully government-aided institution, Fernandez believes this is “disingenuous”.

“Was the school even asked in writing if it could continue to run and educate Malaysians as it had done for 120 years according to the government’s standards without full funding?”

He said this argument missed the fact that the school had been teaching the government’s curriculum as a partially-aided school without issue, suggesting there is little need for intervention.

“I hope the government will realise the travesty and gross injustice of what is being done and renew the lease of Convent Bukit Nanas for a better Malaysia and the dedicated educationists who have fought so hard to educate our women, many who have since made tremendous contributions to nation-building and society,” he said.

See Original: FMT Reporters. (2021, April 21). Was Cabinet consulted on Convent Bukit Nanas land lease issue, asks lawyer. FreeMalaysiaToday.Com.