MALAYSIA Tanah Tumpah Darahku


Friday, December 30, 2022

Forget politicians, let academics helm education ministries, says Maszlee

Maszlee Malik (right) with three other panelists at a public policy seminar in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia today.

BANGI: Former education minister Maszlee Malik said politicians should not be appointed to fill the posts of education and higher education ministers after the next general election.

He said these positions should be filled by academics instead, adding that they would be in a better position to determine the direction of the ministries.

“If possible, let academics fill those two roles. It would be better not to have politicians lead those ministries, just like how it’s done in Indonesia.

“Appoint academics into those roles as they are more knowledgeable (in the field). Not those who are after positions just for the sake of it,” he said during a public policy seminar in Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM).

Currently, the higher education ministry is helmed by Umno vice-president Khaled Nordin and the education ministry by Wanita PKR chief Fadhlina Sidek.

The former Simpang Renggam MP was education minister under the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government, from May 2018 to January 2020. He was also a former lecturer with the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM).

He failed to retain the seat in the recent general election (GE15).

Maszlee also said that academia should not be “hijacked” by politicians and urged academics not to become the “mouthpiece” of political parties.

“As intellectuals, academics should be the guiding light for society. They should not be controlled by those in power,” he said.

Mazlee added that he hoped the unity government would give autonomy to institutions of higher learning to contribute ideas and provide real solutions to issues affecting the nation.

He also called for the government to put an end to the era of punishing educators and administrators in schools and institutions of higher learning for criticising the government. - FMT

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