Former education minister Maszlee Malik says he is ready to sue Umno Youth chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki over the latter's claims that the Pakatan Harapan government had glorified communists in the Form 4 History textbook.
Maszlee, who is also Simpang Renggam MP, has demanded that Asyraf tender an open apology after the Education Ministry clarified yesterday that the changes in the textbooks were made in April 2018, when Malaysia was still under the Umno-BN rule.
The Education Ministry said the textbook was researched, reviewed and certified by its History and Textbook Curriculum Expert Panel which comprised seven history experts from different fields and racial backgrounds.
"I have received advice from my lawyer and ordered him to send a letter of demand to Asyraf over his slanderous statements.
"I gave instructions that Asyraf openly apologises and pay compensation for the slander."
"This evil slanderous political culture needs to stop because it doesn't profit the people at a time when politicians need to focus on helping the people and adopting a culture of service, not finding fault, accusing and slandering as they wish," said Maszlee.
Asyraf had criticised Harapan over two pages in the history textbook on the role played by radical Malay leftist leaders in fighting for independence and the Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army's (MPAJA) battle against the Japanese occupation.
Maszlee had dismissed Asyraf's criticisms as reckless and baseless and pointed out that the changes happened while an Umno man (Mahadzir Khalid) was the education minister.
"I hope this action awakens all parties that the culture of racist slander needs to be stopped immediately, especially if it involves the education of our children.
"I believe Malaysians are fed up and don't like this kind of political culture which can damage racial unity in this country," said Maszlee.
Malaysiakini is seeking Asyraf's response to the matter.