Another din and pandemonium in Parliament because BN Ministers/MPs cannot stand “hard” questions

Another din and pandemonium in Parliament this morning during question time simply because Barisan Nasional (BN) Ministers and MPs cannot stand hard questions.

The original question was from a BN Sabah MP, Edmund Chong Ket Wah (Batu Sapi) who asked the Higher Education Minister “to state that out of the 20 local public institutions of higher learning, how many are listed on the Academic Ranking of World Top 500 Universities”.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Higher Education Ministry, Datuk Dr. Adham Baba gave a tepid and colourless reply, who dared not address the problem of higher education in the country, failing to mention a single international university ranking.

This was followed by two supplementary questions by BN MPs which only enabled Adham to skirt the problem of decline and fall of academic quality of Malaysian universities.

In my supplementary question, I said that while Adham had said that Malaysia will use the National University of Singapore as a benchmark for public universities in the country, I pointed out that the University of Malaya had started out at par with the University of Singapore until the seventies in terms of international recognition for academic excellence and university quality.

However, Malaysia has slipped back to the international academic backwaters, as illustrated by the following international rankings:

  • Omission from Shanghai Jiao Tong University’s Ranking for 500 Top Universities;
  • Omission from Newsweek’s Top 100 Global Universities;
  • Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) QS World University Rankings — with University of Malaya falling from No. 89 in 2003 to 169 in 2004 and 192 in 2006; Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) from No. 111 in 2003 to 326 in 2004 and 277 in 2006; Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) improving from No. 288 in 2005 to 185 in 2006 and Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) from No. 393 in 2005 to 292 in 2006;
  • 2007 Webometrics Ranking (WR) of 3,000 Premier Universities — where the best Malaysian university, USM is ranked No. 1,193, behind eight Thai universities and two Indonesian Universities. Universiti Teknologi Malaysia is ranked 1,317, Multimedia University 1,338, UPM 1,426 and University of Malaya 1,475.

      The citation of these facts and figures was too unbearable for the BN MPs who created a din and caused a pandemonium — but that did not deter me from winding up my question, asking when the government was going to end its denial complex and restore full meritocracy as the precondition for academic excellence and university quality, and when the university search committees were going to result in the appointment of non-Malay Vice Chancellors in the public universities.

      BN Ministers and MPs can only be used to “soft” questions but their din and pandemonium are not going to stop DAP MPs from continuing to field “hard” questions during Question Time.

  1. #1 by ahkok1982 on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 - 1:19 pm

    A very simple question if u ask me… so i shall also give u a simple answer.
    because most of e MPs who are using their butt to warm the chairs in Parliament do not hav higher learning qualifications. so they want e quality of local universities to deterriorate to a point where there is minimal difference between a uni grad and a SPM holder. it will make them look less stupid for not having higher education (or rather do not qualify to get any higher education).
    lets hear e monkeys cry out loud again…. *covering my ears*

  2. #2 by MALAYSIANbukanMALAYSIAN on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 - 1:31 pm

    It’s not the quality, it’s quantity.

    UMNO wants to make sure their coloured people are educated to University level. It’s alright if quality is not there. At least they can lie to their blood brothers by saying……….”Fellow coloured ones, we promise you education, we delivered. Please continue to vote for us, you well educated ones.”

  3. #3 by k1980 on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 - 1:44 pm

    Very easy to solve this problem. Malaysia need to just create a list of“Academic Ranking of 3rd World Universities” by comparing local universities with those from Somalia, Swaziland, East Timur and the like. Then we shall rocket to the top ranking and umno can say our universities are among the bestest in the world. Then we can also rename UM as the ‘Universiti Abdullah Badawi’ in honour of our pm

  4. #4 by VoteDAP on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 - 2:56 pm

    Something Funny i receive from forwarding emails:

    Being a Malaysian is the best because…
    1. World tallest twin towers, Best F1 circuit, largest roti canai, most expensive toll rates, …because Malaysia Boleh!
    2. We can be driving, picking our nose, cursing another driver, talking on the handphone, adjusting the radio and bribing the traffic police at the same time.
    3. We divorce by sending SMS.
    4. Traffic summon can be settled on the spot with the traffic police.
    5. We have Teh Tarik & Roti Canai on the Russian space ship.
    6. We can save a lot of electricity b’coz our TV shows are so crappy.
    7. We can blame everything on the haze or George Soros or government or opposition parties or…
    8. Resourceful City Council, one person to drive the van, one to carry the ladder, one to change a street’s bulb and three others watching…
    9. We make 2 lane trunk roads into 3 lane highway and back to 2 lane when polices are sighted
    10. There’s always something for the JKR to do. They dig, resurface the road, dig and resurface…
    11. All main roads are designated highway because it gives Velooo a reason to collect toll.
    12. Our government can never be wrong.
    13. Our badminton players can only win on home grounds because we are kampung champions.
    14. We have more water than Singapore … nyek nyek nyek.
    After reading the above, I believe you will agree with me that being Malaysian is still the best. You have to be glad that you are a Malaysian and enjoy staying in Malaysia !

    We love being Singaporean because…
    1. We are not Malaysians.
    2. Everyone (especially the Malaysian) hates us, except ourselves.
    3. Famous for Orchard Road and we love Geylang. Geylang is the place to go for thrills!
    4. We have our own island.
    5. We will never ever have yucky chewing gum stuck under our shoes.
    6. We know how to enjoy our vacation in Malaysia – keep a few RM50 notes before you enter the highway: You can throw anything, anytime, anywhere and always wash our cars at the resort.
    7. We can speed up to 180 kilometers per hour and not ending up with a summon as long as we have RM50 with us to spare.
    8. The men are always concerned, first question to ask a girl “Do you have CPF?”
    9. Never fear of getting lost in our country – S$20 taxi ride will get you into the sea. Hahaha!
    10. We’ll never have to worry about finding Mr or Ms right because the government will find one for us.
    11. 1 Singapore dollar = 2.5 Ringgit… nyek nyek nyek.
    12. It’s OK to be Kiasu. It’s part of our culture.

  5. #5 by 4th_wife on Wednesday, 18 April 2007 - 7:59 pm

    YB Lim next time arrow this kind of question to Mat Keris lah! but was Mat Keris in Paliment?

  6. #6 by alanyeap on Thursday, 19 April 2007 - 5:26 pm

    This is a joke that I copy from the internet.

    Malaysian Students are getting smarter.

    What is the main objective of the STPM; is it just to pass people?

    How do you explain the fact that 87% of the students passed the
    examinations of the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) recently?

    When during your grandfather’s time only 10% would have passed?
    Are students getting smarter? Or are STPM questions getting easier?

    Let me put things in their proper perspective.

    During your grandfather’s time, they would ask exam questions like:
    In what year did Parameswara founded the kingdom of Melaka ?
    The correct answer was “1402”, and they found that only 10% of the students managed to answer the question correctly. This didn’t go down too well with the authorities, because the o bjective of the exams was to pass people.
    I mean, what’s the point of having exams if people fail?

    So later, they found another way to ask the same question:
    Parameswara founded the kingdom of Melaka in the year:
    (a) 2001
    (b) 2004
    (c) 1986
    (d) 1975
    (e) 1402
    Tick the correct answer.

    The results were better in that 20% of the students passed. But it was still not good enough, so the authorities tried a different tact a few years later.

    Parameswara founded the kingdom of Melaka in the year1402. True or false?

    Well, half of the students guessed “True” and the other half guessed
    Fully 50% passed. The results were getting pretty acceptable by now.

    Most other countries would be satisfied with a 50% passing rate, but not us.We are a better country, because we are a ‘Boleh’ country.

    The authorities then cracked their heads and then came out with this one:
    Read the following sentence carefully.

    “Parameswara, the cousin of Proton-Iswara, founded the kingdom of
    Melaka in the year 1402.”
    Underline the name of the person who founded Melaka.
    60% underlined “Parameswara”, 30% u nderlined “Proton-Iswara” and 10% underlined “1402”. Hooiyoh……60% managed to pass! So krever!

    But for some reason, the authorities were still not contented. So last year, they came out with this :

    One day in the year 1402, Parameswara founded the kingdom of Melaka .
    Then he went home to have dinner. What did he eat?

    13% handed in blank answers, 57% wrote “Maggi Mee”, and 10% wrote
    “Kentucky Fried Chicken”, and 20% wrote “Tree bark”.

    The official answer was “Food” of course!

    Upon marking completion, it was found that 87% of the students had passed.

    87%…………now that’s pretty impressive!

    So it’s true. The students are indeed getting smarter.

  7. #7 by Johorean on Friday, 20 April 2007 - 4:53 pm

    Hi LKS, as most ministers are not highly educated please excuse their behaviour. Just look at what they have done to Malaysia and you will definitely sympathize them. Some of them like our good Samy could not even add properly. They are just a bunch of idiot who “think” they are very smart and had done a tremendously good job. We, as the grassroot citizen of Malaysia, are always complaining about the government and seems like they do not really go down to where true comments are heard. God bless all of us.

  8. #8 by sammyvellu on Saturday, 21 April 2007 - 12:18 am

    Correction, most BN ministers are un-educated and barbaric

  9. #9 by ginasai on Saturday, 21 April 2007 - 2:08 am

    hahaahahaha… no IPTA in SJTU ranking!!! well that expected… we don’t deserve any don’t we…. see our IPTA ‘professor tiruan’…. especially UTM (Universiti Terlalu Memalukan)… most of they have very little international journal, some don’t even have any!!!! not to mention about their citation & peer review.. maybe 0…. I really wonder what their professorship title will be… it cannot be a ‘prof in their field’ so maybe they are ‘prof tiruan’ hehehe…
    we deserve 100% if our IPTA dropped from any world ranking bcoz;
    1) we hv lot of professor tiruan in our IPTA
    2) promotion creteria for professorship is always based on political reason
    3) at least 50% of the lecturer in new IPTA DID NOT DESERVE TO BE THERE, they are simply not good academically & hv no R&D strength at all… the only thing they have is the Gold medal from expos like Geneva, ITEX etc etc, conferences paper etc…
    4) recruitment is not based on merit…
    It is interesting to see what will happen next year on THES, SJTU ranking…. will UM still in THES or totally disappear from the radar hehehe

  10. #10 by Jonny on Saturday, 21 April 2007 - 12:04 pm

    We’re only interested in the longest, biggest. To boost up our ego.

    More than one generation is lost. Hard to catchup already.

  11. #11 by OrangKulim on Monday, 23 April 2007 - 2:09 pm

    It is true that our education system has degraded so badly over the years, and we feel it more when our children goes to school. The government talk so much about racial integration need to start at school,, but as in one of your blogs it was mentioned ‘First Intergrity then Integration’.

    I like to bring to attention what happened in my kid’s school last week. This happened at SK Taman Hi-Tech, Kulim last Wednesday and Thursday. During the normal school session all the non-Malays students in the school were grouped and placeed in a classroom for the whole morning session, up to recess time. Malay student had some religion related activity., not sure. To keep the non-Malay students occupied a Tamil movie was shown!!!!!!!!. The same thing happened on the second day!

    The title of the movie is Pokkiri,, stared by Vijay,, if you translate the meaning it is ‘Thug’. Vijay’s movie are full of violence, I don’t watch his movies at home, but can you imagine what the school did. What kind of values the school trying inoculate to the kids;; violence, sensuality, etc, etc.

    I sent the below email to the school and district education department, but no reply. I appreciate if you can make the public know about this case. It will be better if you mention this in the parliment. Please help. Please get back to me if you need more information,, hp: 012-5973163.

    From: VimalesonGunaratnam
    Sent: Friday, April 20, 2007 5:48 PM
    Cc: ‘Dr Anizar (E-mail)
    Subject: Tayangan Gambar Tamil Semasa Waktu Sekolah.
    Vimaleson Gunaratnam
    7, Jln Taman Senangin,
    Taman Senangin,
    09000 Kulim, Kedah

    20hb April, 2007

    Tuan Gurubesar,
    SK Taman Hi-Tech,
    Taman Hi-Tech Kulim,


    Seperti yang dimaklumkan di atas, saya sebagai waris, ingin mendapat penjelasan daripada pihak tuan, rational mengapa gambar Tamil ditayangkan semasa waktu persekolahan baru-baru ini. Kejadian tersebut berlaku berturut-turut 2 hari pada 18 dan 19hb April, 2007. Pada masa tersebut pelajar-pelajar bukan Malayu diasingkan ke sebuah bilik.

    Gambar yang ditayangkan bertajuk Pokkiri. Ia dibintangi oleh Vijay.
    Tahukah pihak sekolah yang gambar yang dibintangi oleh Vijay mempunyai unsur-unsur ganas and seks yang keterlaluan. Saya sebagai bapa tidak anak-anak saya menonton gambar di rumah saya, tetapi pihak sekolah telah membawa anak perempuan saya berumur 7 tahun untuk menonton gambar ini berturut-turut dua hari. Saya hantar anak saya ke sekolah untuk belajar ilmu, bukan belajar nilai-nilai yang tidak diingini.

    Saya hendak pihak sekolah memberi penjelasan:
    1. Kenapa tiada pengajaran untuk pelajar-pelajar bukan Melayu pada 2 hari tersebut?
    2. Mengapa gambar ditayangkan semasa waktu pengajaran?
    3. Mengapa gambar yang berunsur ganas dan seks ditayangkan?

    Terima kasih.

    Yang iklas,
    Vimaleson G

    Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia.
    Pejabat Pendidikan Daerah Kulim/Bandar Baru.
    Yang Di Pertua PIBG SK Hi-Tech
    Waris-waris lain.

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