KUCHING, August 7: Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik must muster the political will to recognise the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) soon and to stop “paying lip service”.
Pending assemblywoman Violet Yong reminded Maszlee that what the people wanted to see now was for the ministry to “get to work”.
“It is understandable that the ministry needs time to look into the recognition of UEC, but it does not make sense that it has to take five years to do it,” said Yong in a statement.
She argued that the UEC had been in existence for the last 44 years; thus, there was no issue that its recognition would affect the status of Bahasa Malaysia or disunite Malaysians.
“Maszlee must recognise the fact that what is affecting unity is Umno (United Malays National Organisation) and racist NGOs that it has been supporting. They created issues out of everything, stoking racial and religious sentiments.
“If the recognition of UEC may create disunity among different races within a country, then why do more than 500 universities globally accept UEC?” asked Yong.
Yong was responding to the recent announcement made by Maszlee that the Education Ministry needed to look into the recognition of UEC, and it may take five years to do so.
She lamented that the Barisan Nasional (BN) procrastinated in recognising the UEC for the last 60 years.
“Don’t repeat the same mistake made by the BN administration,” cautioned Yong.
She reminded Maszlee that the UEC had been an issue close to the hearts of the Chinese community, and they had been placing their hope on the Pakatan Harapan government.
“The new government must not disappoint the Chinese community. Instead, it should stop suppressing the development of Chinese education and make the new policy of giving equal treatment to Chinese independent schools.
“The federal government and Maszlee must see the whole issue as a bigger picture and see the recognition of UEC in a positive light, i.e. that it has helped to train many of our students,” she said.
Yong suggested that Deputy Education Minister Teo Nie Ching be entrusted to form a special committee to look into the recognition of UEC.
“A day’s delay in doing so means a day of frustration for the Chinese community. Furthermore, it will continue the brain drain,” reminded Yong. — DayakDaily