YOURSAY | Save our century-old Convent Bukit Nanas

YOURSAY | ‘It’s time for its alumni to step up and fight for their alma mater.’

Vijay47: I look back with intense affection and pride at the six years I spent at St Michael’s School in Alor Setar, Kedah, followed by seven years in St John’s Institution, Bukit Nanas, Kuala Lumpur.

Yes, we are right next door to Convent Bukit Nanas whose girls the St John’s boys always considered their little sisters. In turn, the convent girls would be our staunchest supporters as we took on our great rival, Victoria Institution – boooooo!

Today, our precious neighbours are fighting for survival – today, Convent Bukit Nanas, tomorrow St John’s, and next week, St John’s Cathedral. Is it any surprise that we are suddenly seeing an upsurge in fanaticism from every quarter?

We have books where history is being completely distorted, headmasters practising the most shameful of discrimination, and university professors seeing ghosts behind every shadow. Yet no serving political leader steps forward to stem this lethal tide, perhaps for fear their own illegitimacy would surface.

Convent Bukit Nanas, St John’s, Victoria Institution, St Michael’s Institution in Ipoh, St Xavier’s Institution in Penang, Methodist Boys’ School and Methodist Girls’ School, St Francis Institution in Malacca, ACS (Anglo Chinese School in Klang), these are just a few of the great institutions who moulded generations of Malaysians into honourable citizens unmindful of race and religion.

And today, like skeletal fingers in horror movies, we have nests of fanaticism stirring to lay hands and destroy icons of our nation’s glory.

Federal Territories Lands and Mines, please tell us how after magnificently serving the education needs of every community here for 120 years, Convent Bukit Nanas is found lacking and how their presence on that cool wooded hill is an impediment to progress.

Thank you, Iron Lady Rafidah Aziz, for your fierce support to your alma mater. We equally hope that other citizens and members of royalty who walked along the towering corridors of the mission schools would do their part to preserve history and national heritage.

We cannot continue to be held hostage by anyone’s devastating inferiority complex.

Salvage Malaysia: This is what happens when the leadership is neither wise nor strong. Convent Bukit Nanas is an iconic education institution that should be preserved.

Similarly, how shameful to see Carcosa Seri Negara being in a dilapidated condition and the government doesn’t even bother to conserve such historical properties to educate our younger generation. Instead, money is spent on many other non-value-added expenditures.

Until we see one good progressive leader emerging, Malaysia will continue its regression whilst neighbouring countries surpass us by leaps and bounds.

IndigoTrout2522: All Malaysians should speak up to keep Convent Bukit Nanas and St John’s Institution as they are the national pride of Malaysia.

They should be placed under heritage protection. These schools have educated and graduated thousands and thousands of alumni and it is time for them to also step up to fight for their alma mater.

Find other land but don’t demolish our heritage.

Anonymous 2741: Yes, Convent Bukit Nanas and St Johns should be listed as heritage sites to get the hands of the devious corrupt developers off this land.

Many politicians, etc, are from these schools and they should take action to protect their alma mater like Rafidah.

BlueCottontee: I remembered many years ago Pos Malaysia featured Convent Bukit Nanas. Google it if you want to see the stamp.

In addition, if the government wants to promote tourism, mission schools indeed attract a lot of Western travellers for their historical background and architectural beauty. They are popular tourist attractions although people can only see from the outside.

Dr Raman Letchumanan: Money talks and is the final arbiter. Please probe further. Check on any recent change in land use zoning in the local plans.

There may already be plans made to develop the land for commercial use by some fat tycoons; and they come in all colours and have a cosy relationship with the authorities. So, the pressure is already there. Probably deals have already been made. I have a similar case I may write about.

Hcleong: What is the intention of Federal Territories Lands and Mines on this piece of land? Change the land use, demolish the school and go for commercial development?

Convent Bukit Nanas should be retained as our heritage. Or is there an intention to gazette the school as a public reserve rather than to issue a lease?

For whatever reasons, we must be open, transparent, and consider the interest of the school and our country’s historical sites.

Flabberpro: As far as the leaders of this nation have been behaving in recent times, Convent Bukit Nanas has no commercial nor financial value.

Moreover, some people may see the extension of the lease as a proselyting effort by another group of people, even though such act is non-existent. So, chances are slim.

Heritage? Our leaders do not understand that.

Pakcik Am: Although Convent of the Holy Infant Jesus is a sectarian Roman Catholic school, they have educated so many women in Kuala Lumpur of all races and religions for 120 years. They rendered the service for so long and so well.

The women have gone on to be numerous most exemplary citizens. Although giving a renewal of a lease is not a right, here the occupants have rendered such invaluable public service, for so long without expectation of any material reward.

And Justice For All: It is interesting to watch how this battle will be fought.

I would like to see the old Convent Bukit Nanas girls who today are the movers and shakers of the corporate, legal, arts and humanities and political landscape of Malaysia taking up this challenge for their alma mater. Go for it!

See Original: Malaysia Kini. (2021, April 21). YOURSAY | Save our century-old Convent Bukit Nanas. Malaysiakini.Com.