The Malaysian Education Ministry should, as far as possible, expose the hidden criteria for public university admissions, consistent with the need for transparency
by Dr Tan Seng Giaw
(Kuala Lumpur, Thursday): Tan Sri Musa must consider the ways to expose the hidden criteria for university admissions and to dispel various doubts about the entry requirement. The general trend is for more transparency in information. The complexity of courses and the requirement for admission should be rendered as clear as the sun in noonday.
Recently, MIC President Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu said that the UM medical intake of only one Indian student compared with 16 last year (the total intake is said to be about 200) was unfair and that the Indians were being sidelined. Tan Sri Musa ought to show the true situation.
The Education Minister maintains that the merit system will continue to be used and the people should not be too emotive or overwrought over the entire issue.
“We must think of ourselves as Malaysians first,” added the Minister.
We are Malaysians and this is Malaysian Malaysia. We should have equal opportunities in education. Musa was right. However, his announcement of admissions by merit since last year has caused a furore, especially the lumping of Matriculation with the Higher School Certificate (STPM). Some believe that the Ministry has hidden criteria.
Many feel that the Ministry does not have transparency in university admissions, especially on entry to high demand subjects such as medicine. Apart from the suspicion on the equation of Matriculation and STPM, the Government has not elucidated all the major routes to higher education. Does it also consider equivalent examinations such as Advanced Level in UK, and similar exams in Australia and Canada?
* Dr Tan Seng Giaw, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Kepong