Penang Tahfiz schools told to improve safety

Members of the media crowd outside the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah religious school in Kuala Lumpur after a fire broke out on September 14, 2017. — Reuters pic
Members of the media crowd outside the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah religious school in Kuala Lumpur after a fire broke out on September 14, 2017. — Reuters pic

GEORGE TOWN, Sept 14 – The Penang government today warned all Islamic religious schools in the state to ensure they fulfil safety regulations or face closure, following a fire that claimed 23 at a religious residential school in Kuala Lumpur.

State religious affairs committee chairman Datuk Abdul Malik Abul Kassim has ordered that all Islamic religious schools in the state to review their safety standards and improve it.

“We view the management of Tahfiz schools in this state seriously and stern action will be taken against schools that neglected to fulfil safety regulations and actions included withdrawal of permits or closing down the schools,” he said in a statement today.

He stressed the importance of taking such stern actions for the sake of the students’ safety and to preserve the reputation of Islamic religious schools as places that are safe for students to study in.

“The state Islamic religious affairs department, the local authorities and the fire and rescue department will conduct special briefing sessions with all Tahfiz schools administrators on safety regulations soon to prevent what happened in Selangor from happening here,” he said.

Abdul Malik also extended the state’s condolences to the students and teachers who perished in the fire at the Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah religious residential school early this morning.

“This is a shocking incident that adds another black spot in the history of fires in Tahfiz schools in the country,” he said.

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