19 November 2005

Controversy over silat eased

The controversy over the setting up of Silat Malaysia as a unified martial art, combining the different types of silat in the country into one, may be over.

According to Berita Harian, Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim had agreed to postpone the launch of the new Silat Malaysia that was earlier set for Dec 4.

The daily quoted the Federation of the National Silat Masters Council chairman Datuk Omardin Mauju as saying that the postponement of the launch would help ease the tension between various masters and the ministry.

Earlier this month, Omardin said that Dr Rais’ ministry had a plan to set up Silat Malaysia, which the mahaguru claimed would wipe out the Malay essence from the martial art.

The federation, which represent different silat groups, unanimously rejected the proposal for a unified martial art.

He said Dr Rais agreed to the postponement after a meeting with the federation secretary-general Megat Zulkarnian Omardin on Tuesday.

Omardin said among the problems that would arise from a unified Silat Malaysia would be who would be the mahagurus.

However, the daily quoted him as saying that he would have no objection if a fitness or exercise programme based on silat was created instead of Silat Malaysia.

Sourced from thestar online

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