Thursday, May 23, 2019

Affordable education - shooting fish in a barrel

From Malaysiakini:

Race quotas affect us all

Ikmal Rozlan  |  Published:   |  Modified: 
Getting affordable education as a Malay is like shooting fish in a barrel. Getting affordable education as a non-Malay is like shooting at that same barrel but with a bulletproof-glass lid. While Malaysia is still a long way from having free education, public universities and other state-funded tertiary education institutions in the country are still considered as being affordable and having one of the lowest tuition fees in the world due to government subsidies. 

Be that as it may, a caveat of this system is that most state-funded institutions have a fixed intake quota set in favour of bumiputera citizens, those legally considered to be descendants of the indigenous peoples of the Malay world. This system, by virtue of the NEP, has been a controversial issue for decades, becoming a visceral touching point for both citizens and politicians and once again floating in the zeitgeist due to the government’s recent decision to not change the 90:10 quota, but instead increase the number of overall seats in the matriculation programme.
On average, the cost of an undergraduate degree in a Malaysian public university rarely exceeds RM30,000, which is why placement in these institutions is highly sought after. One way to almost guarantee a spot is to go through a pre-university course called matriculation. The matriculation programme, which provides a diploma-level certificate in either science, accounting or technical subjects, is highly coveted by those looking for an affordable route to higher education. 
The one-year course only costs RM580 after subsidies and students even receive a significant monthly stipend. This makes the programme especially coveted by the B40, the economic group categorised by the government as having a household income less than the national median. Notwithstanding the affordability of public education, many non-bumiputera students in the B40 group are cast aside due to the rigorous quota system and are left to either take out an extensive loan for a private college, which many are not able to afford, or put their education on hold and start working at low-income jobs until they have saved up enough money, if ever.
Since the change of government in 2018, many had hoped that the quota for the matriculation programme would be adjusted to accommodate marginalised B40 Chinese and Indians. Alas, the prime minister announced that instead of decreasing the 90 percent quota for bumiputera students, they would instead increase the number of slots by 60 percent, thus increasing non-bumiputera seats from 2,500 to 4,000. While this seems like a step in the right direction, conversely, the decision takes two steps backwards as it could have adverse impacts on all stakeholders, bumiputera or otherwise.
As the programme is heavily subsidised by the government, an increase in seats means that the programme is now 60 percent more expensive for government coffers, not to mention having to allocate more seats in public universities for said students; an ostensibly irresponsible decision considering how the new government has been expounding non-stop rhetoric about the dire state of the country’s financial debt since its takeover. The additional seats also lead to a higher student-faculty ratio, increasing the workload for lecturers and giving them less time and opportunity to focus on each individual student, which could consequently lead to a drop in the quality of education. 
Furthermore, the student body is also affected as a higher number of students means that competition is tougher and more stressful due to the fact that the aforementioned near-guaranteed ticket for public university placement is diluted as these institutions would not be able to afford opening allocations for the overflow of matriculation graduates.
It is a ubiquitous Malaysian story - many Chinese and Indian parents have experienced their straight-As children being denied placement in the matriculation programme while discovering that many Malays with subpar grades being accepted. The standard of acceptance for Malay students is now likely to lower due to the extra 15,000 seats. This not only diminishes the concept of meritocracy in academia but is also an affront to the self-dignity of the Malays. 
A quota system favouring the Malays implies that Malays are lesser and not able to perform outstandingly on their own effort, indignation overlooked by those who are for the system whom often pressure dissidents to stay reticent through political rhetoric.
Staunch supporters of the quota system often disregard the fact that the taxes that fund these institutions are contributed by citizens of all races. The concept of public education is to provide equity for the poor, racial discrimination only negates the effects and keeps the vulnerable demographic stagnant. Opportunities should be afforded to all and only those with merit should be rewarded, that is a universal truth. 
Understandably, the government is not able to ignore those who are able to vote them out of power and make drastic changes overnight. Changing a public mindset takes time, effort and amicable understanding but for that to occur, communication is key; the public must be allowed to discuss these issues out in the open, without interference from the powers-that-be, which at the moment, are the biggest bulwark.

Charity must begin at home

From Malaysiakini:

Under Harapan, foreigners benefitting at the expense of M'sians

Ng Sing Phing  |  Published: 
While both Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohammad and Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng have screamed that Malaysia’s debt is purportedly at RM1 trillion, yet online portals have reported that the Defence Ministry plans to purchase 30 light aircraft to the value of RM36 billion. 
To date, no related minister – i.e., the prime minister, deputy prime minister, finance minister or defence minister – have openly disputed the online claims.
Coupled with such staggering figures, Malaysians who voted in a new federal government under Pakatan Harapan will be further pained that not only is Putrajaya still splurging, but such excessive government spending will benefit foreigners.
Not only are five countries vying for the RM36 billion jet deal, the premier also announced scholarships worth RM11.47million will be granted to Palestinians.
Meanwhile, let us recall that when Indonesian President Joko Widodo made a two-day official visit in August 2018, Mahathir also announced that the government will consider building schools for Indonesian children in Sabah and Sarawak. 
This is ironic indeed, as there are no laws preventing Indonesian children or other non-Malaysian citizens from enrolling into our national schools.
Why does Harapan neglect our own citizens? For Orang Asli villagers in Peninsular Malaysia and indigenous Sabahans and Sarawakians living in remote hinterlands, access to education remains a distant dream for many who have to walk two hours daily and traverse treacherous rivers to reach school. '
Others simply do not go to school, or their schools in the interiors are in a dilapidated condition or lack amenities.
Another example of Harapan-led Putrajaya depriving its own multiracial Malaysians, especially B40 families, is when Budget 2019 axed the RM60 million matching grants for operating expenses to Tunku Abdul Rahman University College. It is imperative that the Pakatan government reinstates the matching grant for TAR UC.
MCA Youth also implores on the education minister to stick to the 10+6 plan for Chinese primary schools, as this will benefit parents in high-density neighbourhoods who wish to send their children to national type Chinese schools.
The colossal sum combined allocated to purchase military planes, or for the scholarships for foreigners or to construct schools for Indonesian children, could be used to build more schools in rural areas to benefit Orang Asli, Sabahan and Sarawakian villagers, and to address the infrastructural woes of Tamil primary schools.

'Lim KS vs Najib' debate fizzled out

MM Online - Kit Siang says debate with Najib off amid fears of racial conflict (extracts)


Lim Kit Siang attends the 2019 DAP National Conference in Shah Alam May 5, 2019

Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, May 23 — DAP’s Lim Kit Siang has today retracted his agreement to debate scandal-plagued Datuk Seri Najib Razak, citing fears that the event may be turned into an ethnic conflict.

In a statement, the Iskandar Puteri MP has also pre-empted any accusations that he is a coward for deciding so, telling the public instead to judge himself by his 53 years in politics.

“As there is great likelihood that the debate on ‘How Malaysia became a global kleptocracy and how we can become a leading nation of integrity’ between Najib and myself could be turned into a Malay vs Chinese conflict

Malaysiakini - Najib: I received info Harapan fears Kit Siang will be defeated (extracts)

Minutes after Lim Kit Siang issued a media statement announcing his withdrawal from a debate with Najib Abdul Razak, the latter said he received information that Pakatan Harapan was planning to pull the plug on the event.

In a Facebook posting this evening, the former premier said there were concerns within Harapan and DAP that Lim could be defeated.

“I notice that there are steps put in motion to cancel the debate. They are worried Lim might be vanquished in the debate,” he added.

Lim had cited concerns that the debate could be used to stir up racial sentiments and denied that his decision was due to cowardice.

Meanwhile, Najib claimed there were also those in Harapan who are concerned that he would raise issues which Lim (photo) would find difficult to deflect, as well as expose the coalition's propaganda as lies and slander.

“Harapan should have full trust and confidence in Lim because he has been DAP's boss for more than 50 years."

“Harapan should know that nobody would be forced to watch the debate and that public funds would not be used for the event."

“In the spirit of democracy and transparency, let this debate proceed with the title suggested by DAP, which I had agreed to,” he added.


Kaytee's note: I am not surprised the debate has been cancelled. You work out the reason yourself according to your preference, wakakaka.

BIG BRO - Segamat Islamic Religious Department

From MM Online:

Segamat council officers go undercover as cooks, secretly photograph non-fasting Muslims


Mosque committee members prepare for iftar at Masjid Jamek in Seberang Jaya May 21, 2019

Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

KUALA LUMPUR, May 23 — Segamat Municipal Council (MPS) officers are disguising themselves as food stall operators, cooks and waiters in a bid to catch Muslims who do not fast during Ramadan.

MPS president Mohd Masni Wakiman told English daily New Straits Times (NST) that the council in Johor was working with the Segamat Islamic Religious Department to track those Muslims down, especially at stalls under MPS’ supervision.

Mohd Masni said there are 185 licensed stalls and food outlets under MPS at 15 locations.

These include Segamat, Bandar Putra IOI, Segamat Baru, Jalan Segamat Muar, Taman Yayasan, Buloh Kasap, Jementah, Batu Anam and Bandar Utama.

He said MPS has 32 enforcement officers, including two officers who are good at making roti canai, tea and mee goreng mamak, who will disguise themselves as cooks and waiters to catch Muslims eating at the 185 food stalls.

“We have specially selected enforcement officers who are dark-skinned for the undercover job.

“They sound convincing when they speak the Indonesian and Pakistani lingo, so the customers will believe they are really hired to cook, serve meals and take orders,”
he was reported as saying.

No 3 roti-canai specialist apologise to MPS president Mohd Masni Wakiman for not having dark skin


Mohd Masni added that once the order is sent, the enforcement officer will secretly take a photograph of the person enjoying the meal and immediately alert the Segamat Islamic Religious Council for them to take appropriate action.

Fasting is a very disciplined self enforced course of action. Followers of many religions fast though in different fashion. Even non-religious groups do fast, like in Australia where many fast occasionally for 48 hours in unity with the Hungry of the World.

However, Islam in Malaysia definitely has official enforcement of fasting by Muslims during the month of Ramadan.

Last year in Tunisia there were public protests called 'Mouch Bessif' or 'Not by Force.' They referred to the view that no one should be forced to fast during Ramadan. I don't know what was the outcome.

In the USA and Australia there is a criminal law called 'entrapment'. It means a practice whereby a law enforcement agent or agent of the state induces a person to commit a criminal offence that the person would have otherwise been unlikely or unwilling to commit.

I wonder whether MPS president Mohd Masni Wakiman boasting about MPS having ...

... two officers who are good at making roti canai, tea and mee goreng mamak, who will disguise themselves as cooks and waiters to catch Muslims eating at the 185 food stalls.

“We have specially selected enforcement officers who are dark-skinned for the undercover job.

“They sound convincing when they speak the Indonesian and Pakistani lingo, so the customers will believe they are really hired to cook, serve meals and take orders,”

... would fall under law enforcement agent or agent of the state inducing a person to commit a criminal offence that the person would have otherwise been unlikely or unwilling to commit?

But disregarding the so-called 'entrapment' law, is it necessary to spy on and nab non-fasters, like 'peeping toms' spying on and nabbing Muslims committing khalwat offences?

In 2007 in Terengganu, the UMNO state government initiated an ‘ingenious’ plan ('ingenious' as reported by Star Online, wakakaka) where Mat Skoding’s or spies will be recruited from locals to tip-off the state religious department of immoral activities, like cases of close proximity and vice, essentially 'Peeping Toms" too - for more see my 2007 post Mat Skoding - bounty hunters for gatal females.

Yes, some years ago, Putrajaya's Islamic Department set up an Islamic Snoop Squad or official 'Peeping Toms', wakakaka, as proposed by JAWI in 2006 to peep on Muslims committing 'sins' like khalwat, adultery etc.

Then-PM AAB was so incensed by the invasive-to-privacy proposal that he told JAWI to cease and desist, stating the Cabinet's official policy would always be to deny any such proposals in the future or in any State.

This was in the wake of an early rebuke by the Cabinet to Mohd Ali Rustam, then Malacca's Chief Minister, on a similar 'Peeping Toms' scheme in 2005. Rustam was ordered to bugger off with that shameful disgraceful podah peeping proposal.

The AAB Cabinet was determined that no group would ever be permitted to spy on people on so-called religious moral grounds. Bravo to AAB, the MOST religious of any Malaysian PMs.

"... no group would ever be permitted to spy on people on so-called religious moral grounds"?

But the Segamat Islamic Religious Department has today decided otherwise.

It's definitely Big Brother, a term borrowed from the 1949 dystopian novel "1984" by George Orwell. Orwell's book provided the contemporary meaning of Big Brother, meaning a government that is always surveilling the masses.

RMAF aircraft missing way before Army helicopters

FMT - RM300 million for US-made helicopters, bought through dubious firm and never delivered (extracts):

The MD530G helicopters that the Malaysian army never got to fly as they were not delivered despite millions of ringgit paid through a third party. (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: Military helicopters bought during the previous administration for over RM300 million have yet to be delivered to the Royal Malaysian Army, a source close to investigations into allegations of corruption and mismanagement in the purchase of defence assets told FMT.

It is understood that six MD530G light scout attack helicopters, manufactured by MD Helicopters of US aerospace giant McDonnell Douglas, were ordered in 2016 by the defence ministry (Mindef) then headed by Hishammuddin Hussein. [...]

But an investigation into the deal has revealed more startling details, including the fact that the Malaysian army never took delivery of the helicopters. MT contacted Mindef for more details but was told that investigations are still ongoing.

In 1982 the government (Mahathir was both PM and Defence Minister) bought 88 used Skyhawks from the USA. Some in the RMAF handling the introduction of the Skyhawks said those planes were ex-Israeli Air Force ground attack fighters.

RMAF A-4PTM (Peculiar-to-Malaysia) Skyhawk 

40 of them were re-engined, fitted with updated avionics and apparently also had their airframes modified. Those 40 were delivered. I won't gone into the RMAF operations of the Skyhawks fighter attack aircraft which incidentally was also operated by the Singapore Air Force (RSAF).

But I want to know what happened to the remaining 48?

From another blog (SeaDemon) I read (extracts):

In 1984, a year before the delivery of the Skyhawks and purchase of the ancient Albatrosses, Mahathir went to the US and met with President Ronald Reagan at the White House.

In his remark Mahathir said, “I’m particularly happy to note the encouraging signs of economic recovery in the United States, which we consider significant, if not crucial, in assuring a healthy global economy.”

Mahathir added, “In fact, if you were to ask me what is it I would want the United States to do with regard to economic policy, my honest and simple response is for the U.S. economy to get ahead and regain its strength, for the healthier and more vibrant the U.S. economy becomes, the better it will be, not only for the United States and Malaysia but all the developing countries in the world.”

Looks like Najib Razak must have imitated his mentor Mahathir in wanting to help improve the economy of the USA, wakakaka.

Curse of the 'nons'

Star Online - Excellent grades fail student.

by ivan loh

Hoping for the best: Chew (centre) consoling a relative says he hopes to be placed in a public university to keep expenses to a minimum

TELUK INTAN: Form Six student Chew Man Fei had hoped to get into a matriculation programme so that it could help fast track his path to a public university.

The SMJK San Min student said he had applied and appealed to get into the programme three times but without any success.

He had scored 8As and 2Bs in the SPM.

“My mother works as a clerk and does not earn much,” said Chew, 19.

“This is so I can keep my expenses to a minimum,” he told reporters at his home yesterday when Perak MCA Youth chief Daniel Wa visited him.

Chew explained that the matriculation programme was his first choice so that he could have the option to take up his preferred courses upon completion.

“I want to pursue a course in medicine through science.

“If I can’t get it, engineering will be my second option,” he told reporters.

The other option to enter a public university was through Form Six, he explained.

“It’s not my first choice as I would need to compete for places even if I do get good results in the STPM,” said the youngest of four siblings.

“I am also not guaranteed a place,” he added.

The matriculation quota system has drawn backlash from the public after the Education Ministry maintained the intake of students at 90:10 for bumiputra and non-bumiputra students respectively.

Ketuanan Czar of Malaysian Education

Minister Dr Maszlee Malik had also come under fire for his remark linking the quota system with unequal job opportunities for bumiputra in the private sector.

He was backed by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Dr Mujahid Yusof who said that this was in line with the Cabinet’s decision.

However, Dr Mujahid said priority would be given to students from families in the low income bracket (B40) which includes non-bumiputra students.

Ketuanan Czar of Malaysian religion 

Under this year’s matriculation programme, the Education Ministry has allocated 60% of the spots to students from the B40 group.

Wa told reporters that he would go to the Education Ministry to help Chew submit an appeal.

“We have a list of 102 students who want to get into the matriculation programme.

“To our surprise, Chew, who had better results than the rest, failed to get in,” he said.

“We are not sure why he couldn’t get it. [...]

Wa also said he had approached several universities that Chew could apply to as an alternative.

“One foreign university is even offering a full scholarship. However, it’s all up to him,” he said.


kaytee's observations:

(1) I have written on this before, that too-smart 'nons' are NOT welcome by government officials, whether as students into educational institutes, Civil Service, Police force or the Military. Hanya yang serdehana (atau kurang) diterima, thus the Star Online's headline is most spot on, namely, Excellent grades fail student literally.

Perak MCA Youth chief Daniel Wa said: “We have a list of 102 students who want to get into the matriculation programme."

“To our surprise, Chew, who had better results than the rest, failed to get in”.

“We are not sure why he couldn’t get it".

We know why, it's the curse of the nons.

Daniel Wa

Perak MCA Youth chief

(2) Even if Chew Man Fei is allowed to join the 'EXclusive' matriculation program, it's most unlikely he will be allowed to pursue a course in medicine through science, or engineering.

Until the 'RATIO' of Malay doctors and engineers reach 65% or more of the respective professions in Malaysia, the 'EXclusive' degrees will continue to be 'EXclusive' and 'reserved'.

A decade or more ago, there were extraordinary and most strenuous efforts to bar 'nons' from the medical degrees, with even one "doctor" publicly sneering at academically brilliant nons who he 'claimed' failed to meet the extracurricular prowess of British students who were less academically qualified (and we thought we were talking about Malaysian students?), and who also proposed a 'blood-sighting test' to assess the 'squeamishness' of wannabe doctors (implying those were the preposterously presumptuous nons).

I wonder whether that 'doctor' himself undertook his own proposed 'blood-sighting test'?

And even poor Chew Man Fei himself is aware of the obstacles when he said:

The other option to enter a public university was through Form Six.

It’s not his first choice as he would need to compete for places even if he does get good results in the STPM.
He is also not guaranteed a place.

(c) So Chew Man Fei must be one of Maszlee's kaya-sangat orang2 bukan pribumi?

For more of the wealth of Chew Man Fei's mother, in accordance with Maszlee's Bible, see my 2011 post Scholarships.

let every worthy student of whatever ethnic belonging bloom through education, rising as a lotus above its murky poverty-stricken origin 

Matriculation ratio - banging your head against the wall

FMT - Language requirements just good business for the private sector (extracts):

Private sector employers have every reason to employ graduates who are able to speak more than one language. Politicians and university dons should not link issues surrounding the matriculation intake quota with language requirements for jobs, as these two issues are not the same.

The education ministry should be aware that commercial Chinese language skills are becoming important, and that many countries have included the teaching of this language in their education curriculum.

Being able to speak Mandarin and other foreign languages has always been an asset in the business world. Politicians and dons should stop claiming that advertisements by the private sector seeking employees with knowledge of a foreign language are discriminatory in nature.

This cannot be considered ethnic-based discrimination. There are reasons as to why some sectors in the private world seek employees who can speak a specific language.

Logic, truth and business reality - who the eff cares!

The linking of the Matriculation 90:10% ratio with Mandarin requirements for jobs didn't take into considerations such silly issues such as logic, truth, nor business sense - Sheeesh WTF.

It was just an excuse to maintain the ratio - and eff you nons if you don't like it. Mahathir started the Matriculation process at 100% Malays in 1997, as he said, to provide a backdoor as well as, my take on the latter, a truncated haang-fai-tee-lah STPM.

Haang-fai-dee-lah is a Canto-expression which means 'cepat jalan lah'.

Everything is short - masuk universitas melalui pintu belakang tanpa STPM, the duration of the pre-university matriculation studies, and I would imagine, standards too.

As Nathaniel Tan wrote in the Star Online (extracts only):

The other brief comment on the matriculation issue is the manner in which the Education Ministry has stated that despite the increase in matriculation spots, students taking STPM will not be affected, and criteria for entry into university is based entirely on merit. Said merit is apparently based primarily on CGPA scores from both matriculation programmes and STPM.

There appears to be some logical disconnect here. If CGPA scores from matriculation and STPM are weighted the same, this implies that the two courses are of the same academic standard.

If this is true, then this negates the raison d’etre of matriculation in the first place – why not just make everyone take STPM?

If this is not true, and one of these programmes is easier than the other, then surely it is facetious to suggest that comparing these two CGPAs side by side – when in fact they are apples and oranges – will produce a meritocracy that is completely blind to race, religion and background.

And do you think Mahathir would change or back away from what he had initiated?

Damn AAB for introducing that 10% for nons (mainly marginalised Indians), wakakaka.


So, providing the explanations and having prominent socio-political workers-activists speak up against the LOP-SIDED ratio, and rationale on why some business sectors require Mandarin-speaking as a job requisite are blardy useless as it's not appreciated or even heard. In fact the powers-that-be don't want to know about it.

Suck on the ratio, mongrels, wakakaka.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Who to replace Maszlee as Education Minister?

Extracts from Malaysiakini:

Dr M or Anwar should take over education portfolio

Published:   |  Modified: 
COMMENT | The writing is clear on the wall. Education Minister Maszlee Malik must go. If he is not prepared to resign voluntarily, which an honourable man should do, then he must be sacked.
Is this another Maszlee-bashing article? Not to me. This piece is to tell Maszlee the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. It’s time for the minister to stop playing deaf and dumb. He must wake up to the reality that he is the weakest link in the cabinet and a great liability to the Pakatan Harapan government.
A Maszlee acolyte like Universiti Sains Malaysia vice-chancellor Asma Ismail will probably think that those who critiqued her boss and master must be doing so for politically motivated aims. She is so wrong!
A VC sharing Maszlee’s priority for “race and religion” is yet another cause for concern. That some top guns in our local universities are guided by such motivations is alarming. Our next generation of Malaysians will become brainless “ducks” and “chickens” if such people continue to be decision-makers in our education system
I don’t care who gets to be appointed a minister as long as he or she is capable, far-sighted and excels in the job. Malaysians voted for a new team to run the country in GE14. We did not vote for half-baked ministers to be part of the administration.
I find little joy in criticising ministers and political leaders. I wish I do not have to waste time and energy picking on the failings of those holding public office. Surely, senior citizens like me have better things to do than to worry about dumb ministers who keep on goofing.
However, the truth must be told at times. Maszlee has been on my radar for months and for good reasons. Since the minister’s announcement that Sarawak will be his “medan dakwah”, I have been keeping a close eye on him.
Maszlee, you can turn your home state into your “medan dakwah” for all I care. Just don’t touch Sarawak. You do not understand Sarawak, or Sabah, at all. The majority of Sarawakians have no respect for you. That’s the honest truth. Chew on it!
Malaysiakini reader had cheekily said that Maszlee should be a Grab driver. I’m not sure I’ll be comfortable in a vehicle driven by Maszlee. He has no sense of direction. 
Seriously, Maszlee is beyond salvation. Dr Mahathir Mohamad has to act and act fast. Surely, the prime minister is not blind. Malaysians have had enough of Maszlee and his penchant for doing and saying the wrong things. One year of Maszlee is a year too long. We have wasted a year with him. We cannot afford to lose more time.
A prominent corporate leader told me recently how he had helped Maszlee during the elections. He lamented how Maszlee did not turn up for events he was invited to despite agreeing to be present. A sign of a character flaw, he concluded.
That's gross irresponsibility in my book. Why, did Maszlee think that accepting an invitation to grace an event is like promising your buddies to hang out at the mamak outlet to watch a football match? What were you thinking, Maszlee?
What is the solution? I think Mahathir himself should take over the education portfolio. Forget the Harapan ruling. If the prime minister is not keen because he has more than enough on his plate, the alternative is Anwar Ibrahim.
Both Mahathir and Anwar have been education ministers. While we might have misgivings during their tenures as education ministers, we must be prepared to take some risks with them now. I believe the risk is worth it. Both are elder statesmen now and I want to believe that whatever they do, they have the best interests of the country and the citizenry at heart.
kaytee note: The reason why Maszlee became the Education Minister was because we did not want the PM to hold another ministry and objected strongly to Mahathir's initial ambition. OK, so Mahathir had to scrap the bottom of his Pribumi Party barrel for someone to be in that post he was denied.

And what blardy nonsense is this to now suggest Mahathir or the to-be PM Anwar becomes the new Education Minister?
I know that Education Minister's post has to be a Malay, so get a Malay educationist like, say, Dr Bari (but can be also someone else) to do the monumental job. If necessary, pluck Dr Aziz Bari from his ADUN post in Perak, and make him a senator, then appoint him as the new Education Minister. And eff that Pribumi Party's allocation for Education.

P/S There are several non-Malays who are well qualified but alas, the post is sensitive and has to be a Malay - sorry, nons. Incidentally, Mahathir must NOT be tempted to appoint that Cambridge (USA) graduate, wakakaka.

DAP samaritan in Melaka

Star Online - MP pays enrolment fee for teen to pursue dream to become forensic scientist:

by r.s.n.murali

Shannen (second from right) receiving the cash aid from Khoo 

MELAKA: The door has opened for SPM high-achiever Shannen Lovenia Kamal Abdullah to pursue her ambition to become a forensic scientist.

The 17-year-old from the Melaka Portuguese Settlement here was accepted for a foundation programme at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) but her fisherman father could not afford to pay the RM655 enrolment fee.

But her hopes were realised when Kota Melaka MP Khoo Poay Tiong came to her aid.

He had been in Shannen’s shoes 30 years ago when he got an offer to pursue tertiary studies but his parents could not afford the registration fee.

And now he is paying it forward.

Khoo also promised to look into Shannen’s education needs until she completes her studies at UKM.

He hosted a buka puasa dinner for Shannen and her six family members at Shah Beach Resort in Tanjung Kling here, where he presented her with the financial aid.

Shah Beach Resort general manager Dennis Samford made special arrangements for the dinner.

Samford said he rescheduled a corporate booking for the buffet because it was for a good cause and Shannen was scheduled to leave soon for the university in Bangi, Selangor.

Shannen scored 10 As in SPM. She had sought help from Melaka Action Group for Parents in Education who highlighted her plight to Khoo.

“It is my childhood dream to be a forensic scientist.

“Thank you to all who came forward to help me,” she said.