MARA students should not be
forced to study the Mahathir's thoughts
by Ronnie Liu Tian Khiew
According to a Bernama report
on 16 October 2003, the students at UiTM will be forced to study the "
Thoughts of the Prime Minister".
A book of that title,
containing a collection of speeches by Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad,
will be a compulsory subject at the University of Technology MARA.
This was decided by the UiTM
senate recently as they want all students and lecturers to study the Prime
Minister's ideas covering various fields.
"Dr Mahathir's leadership has
been proven and should be emulated," the news agency quoted vice-chancellor
Ibrahim Abu Shah as saying.
But many other Malaysians who
were critical of Mahathir's thoughts may not share the viewpoints of Ibrahim
Abu Shah and other senate members. As such UiTM should refrain from forcing
the Mahathir's thoughts down their throats.
In the late 1960s, the "Little
Red Book" containing the thoughts of Chinese Communist Party Chairman Mao
Zedong was widely studied in China. But the students of China were not
forced to study Mao's thoughts in schools and campuses. They were only
encouraged to read the " Little Red Book".
Mahathir may have done
something good for the nation. But at the same time he is guilty of many
wrongdoing and blunders during his 22 years as Prime Minister.
One of his greatest disservices
to the nation is that he has corrupted the minds of the young generation, so
much so that many youngsters today cannot differentiate what is right and
what is wrong. The young people are not allowed to think and speak freely in
schools and campuses, thanks to the University and University Colleges Act
introduced by Mahathir himself when he was the Education Minister. Coupled
with ISA, OSA, Printing and Publication Act and other draconian laws, the
Malaysian youth as a whole have not been allowed to think, speak and write
freely on political, social, cultural and educational issues. Many of them
have become bonsais with a stunted mind.
Forcing the students to study
Mahathir's thoughts could only corrupt the minds of the youngsters further.
We do not want our youngsters to be influenced by a culture of corruption,
cronyism and nepotism, without democracy, transparency and good governance.
We hope the proposed Mahathir
Institution of the UIA would not compel its students to enrol such courses
* Ronnie Liu, DAP
National Publicity Secretary & DAP Selangor Chairman