Persons are rallying to avoid wasting a 122-year-old British-colonial faculty in the course of Kuala Lumpur from metropolis builders.
The net petition Save SMK Convent Bukit Nanas has gotten greater than 12,000 signatures because it went up final night time, calling for the necessity to protect the wealthy historical past of the all-girls faculty’s constructing, which was erected in 1899 by three sisters from a Roman catholic institute, the Congregation of the Holy Toddler Jesus.
“SMK Convent Bukit Nanas occupies an integral a part of Malaysia’s historical past and never renewing the land lease endangers the distinctiveness and the richness of that historical past,” the petition by Convent Bukit Nanas Alumni stated, including: “We have to protect it for the longer term era of younger women who aspire to move via its corridors.”
The lease for the Convent Bukit Nanas, or CBN, is because of expire on Sep. 6 and has not been renewed though the college had utilized for an extension 5 years in the past. Which means that the federal government can take again the land and do no matter it desires with it.
Final December, the Land and Mines Division informed CBN that the lease for its faculty wouldn’t be prolonged when it expires. The varsity has utilized to problem the federal government’s choice to take again the land. The case will probably be heard on the KL Excessive Court docket on Might 4.
Marina Yong, the president of the CBN’s alumni group of about 4,700 members, expressed her gratitude for the assist CBN has obtained.
“It reveals you ways necessary it [Convent Bukit Nanas] is to lots of people,” the 57-year-old informed Coconuts right now. She doesn’t know why the Land and Mines Division has determined to not renew the lease, however known as it “alarming and really disappointing.”
“Disappointing within the sense that it appeared prefer it was simply really easy to dismiss the wealthy historical past of the college. If we try this, we now have to ask, then, what’s the worth of historical past?” she stated.
The Land and Mines Division didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark by way of cellphone and e mail.
There may be extra to the college than its previous age and wealthy historical past. The varsity stands out for its Gothic-style structure, full with patterned tiles and nice pillars. Notable names like veteran host Adibah Noor and former minister for worldwide commerce and business Rafidah Aziz have additionally walked via its doorways as college students.
We take a better take a look at this very old-fashioned in the course of the town.
It’s not only one faculty on high of a hill
Convent Bukit Nanas consists of two major faculties and one secondary faculty, which sits on high of the 11,000 sq m Bukit Nanas hill, and might altogether accommodate about 2,000 pupils aged 7 to 17.
Alongside the identical highway, Jalan Bukit Nanas, there may be the St. John Cathedral catholic church, and the boys’ faculty St. John’s Establishment, which has been gazetted as a Nationwide Heritage web site. A forest reserve is positioned proper subsequent to it.
Many notable ladies in Malaysia have walked alongside the spacious corridors and graduated from CBN, together with native writer Hanna Alkaf, who wrote the historic fiction The Weight of Our Sky based mostly on the 1969 racial riots. There was additionally veteran singer-actress Adibah Noor, human rights advocate Ambiga Sreenevasan, and former minister of worldwide commerce and business Rafidah Aziz.
Hanna additionally shared the petition to her Twitter followers, saying: “KL DOES NOT NEED ANOTHER HIGH RISE.”
Some have speculated that the land may be used for city redevelopment.
SAVE MY ALMA MATER! Convent Bukit Nanas was based in 1899 — that is 122 years of irreplaceable historical past and structure. Its lease is because of expire in September; renewal has been refused.
KL DOES NOT NEED ANOTHER HIGH RISE. https://t.co/ea3mqDx4fD
— Hanna Alkaf / not right here (@yesitshanna) April 20, 2021
Sanctuary from conflict
CBN as soon as served as a World Conflict II sanctuary throughout the 1941 Japanese occupation, changing into a protected area for about 400 civilians, together with orphans, till the conflict led to 1945.
Sports activities homes named after former headmistresses
For sport actions, the college divides the scholars into 4 homes named after former headmistresses who reigned from 1923 to 1966. They had been Aidan (Purple), Adele (Yellow), Xavier (Inexperienced), and Pauline (Blue).
Yearly, members of every home will compete in a variety of sports activities together with short-distance working and excessive bounce to gather factors for the group and finally win a trophy.
The furry CBN household
The varsity will get common visits from pleasant neighbours too, and no, we’re not referring to the boys of St. John, however monkeys. Pleasant macaques from the KL Forest Eco Park forest reserve have greeted the ladies of CBN, sharing meals with the scholars and academics alike.
Generally, the scholars would climb up the hill as a part of a supervised after-school exercise, as a result of why not? Ultimately, the 20-minute climb up would result in the favored vacationer spot KL Tower.
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