It is Muhyiddin who should resign as Education Minister and not the forced resignations of Prof Redzuan and Saifuddin from University of Malaya


The person who should resign for the plight of higher education in Malaysia today is not Professor Datuk Dr. Mohamad Redzuan Othman as head of University of Malaya’s Centre for Democracy and Elections (UMcedel) and his removal as dean of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in the university, or former deputy Education Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah as senior research fellow from University of Malaya, but Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as Education Minister.

What has Muhyiddin to show in more than a year as the powerful Education Minister gobbling up the former Ministry of Higher Education, in the field of tertiary education apart from the latest disgraceful episode of interference with and violation of academic freedom resulting in the resignations of Redzuan and Saifuddin from the University of Malaya?

It has become a heart-rending occasion for Malaysians whenever there is a publication of world university rankings, for it is not to find out how well Malaysian universities compare with the best in the world but how badly Malaysian universities fared in international university comparisons and benchmarkings.

Less than two weeks ago, the release of the Times Higher Education Asia University Rankings 2014 provided latest testimony of the continued decline in global rankings of Malaysia’s public universities, with no local tertiary institution in the top 100.

Five countries were represented in the top 10 of the Asian university rankings – Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and China. Even India made outstanding progress with 10 institutions in the top 100, compared with only three last year. Thailand was in the top 100 list.

The Middle East was also well represented, with universities from Iran, Israel, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Turkey making the list.

University Of Tokyo emerged top among Asian universities followed by the National University of Singapore.

University of Hong Kong, Seoul National University and China’s Peking University clinched the third, fourth and fifth spots respectively.

Thailand has two universities in this year’s ranking, King Mongkut’s University of Technology, Thonburi, which rose five places to joint 50th, and Mahidol University, which dropped 21 places to 82nd spot.

Singapore has two highly placed universities in the ranking, NUS at second spot and Nanyang Technological University at 11th position.

Hong Kong was named the star performer by THE, given its size, and the fact that it had six universities the top 50 of the ranking.

In April, Malaysian public universities were also left out of this year’s ranking of the annual Times Higher Education Top 100 Universities under 50 years old.

Four Asian universities were ranked among the top 10 of the world’s young universities, including South Korea’s Pohang University of Science and Technology which took the top spot, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) (third placing), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (4) and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (5).

The country was also absent from the Times Higher Education World Reputation rankings list released in March, losing out to other Southeast Asian countries.

Will Redzuan and Saifuddin’s resignations from University of Malaya, and the failure of Malaysian universities to regain world-class academic standards and standing, which is so critical and crucial to Malaysia’s international competitiveness, be on the agenda of the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, and is this one of the “taboo” subjects which no Minister dares to raise in Cabinet?

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  1. #1 by undertaker888 on Monday, 30 June 2014 - 3:49 pm

    He can resign. The other is the ultra-chicken ridhuan tee. another bird-brain with professor title.

    • #2 by cemerlang on Tuesday, 1 July 2014 - 10:17 pm

      He desperately needs to be accepted

  2. #3 by waterfrontcoolie on Monday, 30 June 2014 - 8:41 pm

    Their aim is to REMOVE ALL THINKING EDUCATED MALAYS from any platform which can influence the opinion of their society! Simple enough they can then lead them by their nose! They are leading the Malay society into the abyss of no return and by then well their nests would be fully feathered for a couple of generations! It is unthinkable that characters like the Frog could be given a Senate seat in UiTM but these gentlemen who think aloud are asked to go! Anyway, UiTM is just good enough to have such Froggy character to direct them into the 21st Century! YB, comparing our public Universities has really gone COLD! They are no longer interested in the academic achievement. They are only interested to build more campuses at 5 times the market price! The saddest thing is the reluctance, in fact the failure of the better educated Malays to meet such challenge or are we indeed devoid of such people in the nation already? Remember the saying ” Great men think alike but fools seldom differ!”. Murray expounded the theory that in every society, no matter what the average DNA is; will produce at least 2% of geniuses but surely you cannot get all of them into hundreds of higher institutions of learning; you still need other society to offer the competition unless like our current practice of allowing competition within a close-knit scenario which is bound to produce average brains unable to compete out side its own environment! Hence all the comparison of universities will not be heeded until Petronas runs out of the black gold! And the Malays have to compete outside the nation! We all shall have to wait!

  3. #4 by yhsiew on Monday, 30 June 2014 - 10:04 pm

    Agree.

  4. #5 by justanotherakyat on Monday, 30 June 2014 - 11:57 pm

    Even if the deputy pm resigns…then what? Another umno yes men just gonna take over and we are back to square one.

    The only way to change the system is to change the ruling power and at rate things are going…i don’t see this happening in the near future! The next generation perhaps.

    BN knows the majority too well and are not shy to play it dirty. Pakatan is playing it too clean and seem to be out of bullets.

    One is playing chess and the other is playing checkers. How do you beat them?

    Sigh!

  5. #6 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 1 July 2014 - 10:00 am

    Actually Muhiyiddin should never have been made Education Minister, they should have made Ibrahim Ali the one since he and their group who they pander to think they know so much.. If its going to be a disaster, why delay it with pretenders like Muhiyiddin? Lets get on to final outcome of the debate no matter how disastrous and get on with it..

  6. #7 by Noble House on Tuesday, 1 July 2014 - 11:55 am

    When renowned academics get the axe but sicko such as Ridhuan Tee gets promoted, how well will this goes to explain our national education standards, let alone the academic excellence? Ever wonder then why our universities failed to make the rankings all these years?

    Politics should be out of education. It did not bode well for the future of Malaysia’s education. It is a shame that the top UM management has failed to defend academic freedom and continued to be the raison d’etre for the Umno government.

    Stop turning our children into modern day robots!

    • #8 by cemerlang on Tuesday, 1 July 2014 - 10:16 pm

      It is already quite robotic when every day and night is spent looking at the cell phone, smart phone, handphone; whatever

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