The Star reported that Deputy Education Minister Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi is not entirely happy with some of the reactions to his effort of highlighting the “dangers” posed by the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) phenomenon on the youth in Malaysia.

He was quoted by the English speaking daily as saying the matter should not be a joking matter.

As he puts it, the trend seems to be prevalent in society and popular media, making it imperative for the Government to prevent it from penetrating schools.

He adds that it is his belief that the LGBT lifestyle is not a healthy way of life because he claims that there are LGBT is the biggest cause of HIV after drugs, and that it also causes a lot of social problems such as broken marriages.

Dr Mohd Puad also told the paper that his ministry is looking at equipping school counsellors with the necessary knowledge and understanding as well as training them to deal with LGBT.

He however denies that the Ministry will be taking a hardline stance as they are not looking at identifying LGBT students nor are they interested in punishing them.

The deputy minister was slammed last month for purportedly supporting a list spelling out some definitions and identifiable LGBT traits, at a seminar in Penang, aimed at helping parents recognize “symptoms” of LGBT in children.

The seminar, “Parents Handling LGBT Issues”, organised by Yayasan Guru Malaysia Berhad and Putrajaya Consultative Council of Parent-Teacher Association, has since been held in Kedah and Trengganu.

Although it is independent of the Education Ministry, the deputy minister had officiated at the seminars.