Unless and until a federal directive is issued,
headmaster who called parents of schoolchildren 'pariahs' during
assembly remains scot-free.
The district education office here can only probe into accusations of
racism against a headmaster if and unless there was a federal directive.
District education officer Mohd Ghazali Abu Bakar said his department
could not simply investigate the allegations on its own without such
“It’s an administrative procedure,” he told FMT.
Ghazali was responding to police reports lodged against SMK Tunku
Abdul Rahman headmaster Ng Tong Koang, 56, for allegedly using the word
‘pariah’ during assembly.
Ng has allegedly used the word on Monday to tick off parents of the
schoolchildren for regularly making a prohibited U-Turns outside the
“I have been telling your parents not to make the illegal U-Turns.
Why are your parents not listening? “Are your parents pariahs?” Ng
allegedly asked the stunned children.
Separate reports were lodged at the Nibong Tebal police station in
the past two days by state MIC Youth chief J Dhinagaran and Hindraf
Makkal Sakti’s Nibong Tebal deputy chief P Murugan.
Ghazali explained that the federal education department, acting on
press reports, would issue directives, if need be, to district
departments to probe any such incidents.
“The district office then would act on the directive and investigate.
We will recommend appropriate action based on our findings,” he said.
Shocked by allegations
department has yet to receive such a directive but Ghazali assured a
thorough investigation once a directive had been issued, which he
expects to be soon.
Ghazali nevertheless said he was shocked by the allegations against
Ng especially when a federal circular recently cautioned principals and
teachers against racial controversies.
Ng, in the meantime, had already offered a public apology before
teachers and pupils over the incident at a special assembly on Tuesday
On Monday evening, Ng had also apologised to MIC state youth chief
Dhinagaran and four other party colleagues for uttering the disparaging
Ng told the MIC team, when they met him at his school office, that he
did not mean to insult Indians or any other community for that matter.
However, Ng’s apology, was not accepted by Hindraf Makkal Sakti’s
Murugan, who said the headmaster could have used any other word to chide
He demanded the education authorities take stern action the principal.
“Ng’s use of the pariah word is a direct consequence of Interlok,” said Murugan.****Reports lodged against racist HM
The controversy over the novel Interlok may be rekindled after a headmaster used a derogatory word during school assembly.
NIBONG TEBAL: The controversy over national laureate Abdullah Hussain’s Interlok novel is not over yet.
A school headmaster here has sparked a fresh public row over the demeaning word “pariah”.
SMK Tunku Abdul Rahman headmaster Ng Tong Koang, 56, has allegedly
used the word to tick off parents of the schoolchildren for making a
prohibited “U-Turn” at a nearby traffic light.
Ng has allegedly used the word during a morning school general assembly yesterday.
Two reports have been lodged against Ng over the past two days at the Nibong Tebal police station.
One was lodged by state MIC Youth chief J Dhinagaran yesterday
morning and the other by Hindraf Makkal Sakti’s Nibong Tebal deputy
chief P Murugan.
Murugan claimed Ng had told the students at the assembly that their
parents were recalcitrant for flouting traffic rules by making
prohibited dangerous U-Turns at a traffic light junction just outside
Ng allegedly told the students that making “illegal U-Turns” were
dangerous, especially when schoolchildren are crossing the road.
“I have been telling your parents not to make the illegal U-Turns. Why are your parents not listening?
“Are your parents pariahs?” he allegedly asked to the stunned children at the assembly.
Ng’s alleged use of the word “pariah” word angered Indians in the
neighbourhood as the news spread via whispering campaigns and mobile
by several local Hindraf activists, Murugan also submitted a copy of
his police report to the Seberang Perai Selatan district education
office in Jawi.
He wants the district education officer to take stern action against Ng.
He also called on the state education department to issue a circular
to all schools in the state to avoid repeat of such incidents.
Murugan said that Ng’s utterance of the derogatory word was a direct result of the introduction of Interlok novel in schools.
Hence, he said that Hindraf’s anti-racism campaign was crucial to halt further polarisation of Malaysians along racial lines.
“The state-sponsored racism has definitely spread to the schools.
“As a headmaster, Ng should have realised that the word would stir racial sentiments,” said Murugan.
When contacted, Dhinagaran told FMT that Ng has admitted to uttering
the word at the assembly and apologised to him and his party colleagues
at the school office yesterday afternoon.
“We have expressed our aversion to him and he was apologetic. He said
he did not mean to insult Indians or any other communities.
“He only wanted to use a strong word to scold the stubborn parents,” said Dhinagaran.
Ng was unavailable when contacted for comment.
Similarly, attempts to contact the district education officer were futile as the office line was always busy.