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KUCHING, May 23: Bandar Kuching MP Dr Kelvin Yii clarified that the scholarships for Palestinian students as announced by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad are not supported with public funds.
He said funding for the scholarships, worth RM11.47 million, offered by the 12 universities for these foreign students had to be raised and generated by the university authorities themselves.
“The scholarships that were announced by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad yesterday for Palestinian students living here will only involve funds that will be raised or generated by the universities themselves, including local Private Institutions of Higher Learning or private universities (IPTS).
“It will not involve any government funding or affect scholarships that are being offered to local Malaysians.
“This was confirmed by Deputy Education Minister Teo Nie Ching upon verification after the announcement yesterday,” said Dr Yii in a statement today.
From his own perspective, he believed that priority in terms of scholarships and entry into public universities or IPTS should be given to local students.
“I believe it is important that priority should be given to the locals not just on scholarships but also entry into public universities or institutions of higher learning.”
Of the 12 universities involved, only one is a government university and the rest private universities.
Dr Yii said it was common practice for private universities to offer scholarships to foreign students on an annual basis, as it formed part of their strategy to attract international students to improve the universities’ international ranking. — DayakDaily