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KUALA LUMPUR, July 9 ― The suggestion by a former minister to shut down tahfiz schools ― which teaches Quran memorisation ― in Malaysia has has no basis or rationale, Datuk Mujahid Yusof Rawa said today.
In a Sinar Harian report, the minister in the Prime Minister's Department in charge of religious affairs said that the suggestion by Tan Sri Zainuddin Maidin has no “concrete excuse”.
“I consider that as a statement that has no issues whatsoever. Why do we have to close tahfiz schools? I'm asking him,” he reportedly said.
He also said that closing down tahfiz schools will not solve any problems.
“If there are weaknesses in terms of curriculum or security, we must monitor to improve them, not close them down,” he added.
Zainuddin made the suggestion, which has caused controversy, claiming that such schools do not give hope for the new generation of Muslims.
Tahfiz schools in Malaysia are largely outside the purview of the Education Ministry, instead reporting to the religious departments in order to operate. Many utilise their own syllabuses and teaching methods to educate students.
In November 14 last year, then deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Islamic affairs, Datuk Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki, told the Dewan Rakyat that four curriculum models were being drafted under the National Tahfiz Education Policy, to shape future direction of tahfiz students.