Jul 4, 2008


It won't take too long before the number of students in private colleges and universities (IPTS) in Malaysia outnumbers those in the public universities. The ratio is approaching 1:1, according to a recent Star report. What are some of the implications? What are some of the challenges? Is it creating a huge impact on national education standard? How about job opportunities?

With as many students entering IPTS compared to the IPTA importance will only grow and will have a big impact on the job generate potential in the education sector the skill levels of the work force and the research activities in our universities.

There are another layer of IPTS who don't have research aspirations but will be known for offering good facilities, courses and teaching. In addition, I suspect that there will also be some specialized IPTS which focus on certain types of courses – design (LimKokWing) or IT (Informatics). And then there will be a scattering of smaller IPTS which offer 'value for money' courses. These colleges have been growing rapidly since decades ago.

There will be a different in the quality and reputation of private colleges and universities. In fact some of this is already happening. There will emerge a handful of IPTS which will challenge the IPTA as research universities. Sunway Monash and Nottingham are obvious candidates. There will be other 'home grown' IPTS which will want to or be pushed to the direction of being research universities. This is another good move by private colleges and universities to competing each other in various sectors.

But there are also many concern associated with the rapid development of the IPTS, including: Generally, I think the quality of lecturers must be equal standard with IPTA. The types of courses being offered are commercially viable. The growing number of foreign students is the problems associated with this are above the limit.

The development of the IPTS has more positives than negatives, in my opinion. It provides another avenue of job creation for the country, it gives different options to Malaysians who want to earn a degree, it earns foreign exchange for the country and it can contribute towards human capital development as nations agenda that we searching for.


Jul 3, 2008

70% Public Universities Graduates jobless? Its almost True....

Some 70% of public universities and institutes of higher learning graduates in the country are unemployed. This is in contrast with 26% for private institutions of higher learning and 34% for foreign graduates. I think even the most cynical amongst us out there would have been shaken by such a staggering number of unemployed graduates. I mean how can more than half of our graduates be unemployed?

I suspect that some incompetent statistician somewhere took the total number of unemployed graduates in the country who could have graduated in different years and divided the number by the number of tertiary education students in a year to obtain the silly percentage.
If however, the "70%" statistic is indeed true, then I think we might as well shut down half of our public universities. What was more interesting however is the additional breakdown of unemployed graduate numbers by universities provided by the Ministry. Note that the following breakdown refers only to the 20,217 who have registered themselves with the Ministry of Human Resources, and does not include those who haven't bothered with the Ministry.

It is most interesting to note that Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) contributes by far the most number of unemployed graduates amongst all the universities in Malaysia. The number of unemployed produced (3,278) is more than double the next highest university, Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) (1,532). To put it into context, it is hence extremely laughable that UiTM as recently years ago, declared itself to be a "world class university"

Beijing Olympics is going to Create Instant Millionaires


Singapore offers S$1 million (RM2.3 million) for an Olympic gold while South Korea US$200,000 (RM662, 000). How much for Malaysian athletes?

RM1 million incentives is a great motivator to our athletes. To win a gold medal is not easy because the competition is getting tougher. We can see that from one Olympics to another, the standard is increasing. We should therefore set a higher target, and provide a more attractive incentive, RM1 million for gold RM300, 000 incentive to silver medallists and RM100, 000 to those who won the bronze. Reward was appropriate as the Olympics was an international event and held only once in four years.

We have never won a gold medal in the Olympics, badminton seems to be our best prospect, but we should not set high hopes as in the past, it was only manage to contribute silver and bronze medal each. Psychological strength is one of the aspect that separate winners fro each other. Our athletes are of world standard in certain sports but whether they win or lose will depend on their mental strength.

I don't think such incentives are wasting our money. Let's do some calculation here: What are the probabilities that any of our athletes could win any medal at the Olympics? Winning an Olympics medal is something special that not everyone can achieve. Nowadays, sports all over the world have become profitable events. All top athletes get paid lucratively. The pride of our country is at stake. As long as our athletes confident that they can make it, then the gold medals are achievable.

Jul 2, 2008

Rising Street Protests


More than 40,000 protested on 10 November and about 50,000 went out to protest on 25 November 2007. It was a huge amount t of protesters in Malaysia’s history after almost 10 years. A total of approximately 100 000 Malaysians who have taken o the streets in peaceful and non-violence protests, not counting the smaller protest against fuel price hikes, toll rates hikes, judiciary reforms and various issues regarding ethnics.

Hundreds are netted by police, the larger portions that are released after some hours of detention. What goes on during those hours of detention, only those who have been in can tell. No doubt, police will try to weed out the ‘ring leaders’. Yet all the mainstream media reports, however biased, there is noticeably a common denominator-it is the police who started firing tear gas and used water cannon to spray and disperse they unarmed crowd.

The police alleged that they have used minimum force against protestors, but using machines like water cannons and tear gas is not a minimum force towards the peaceful protestors. It could be construed as an unjustified amount of force against people who were in no way being violent in defending themselves. Television footage showed that some even not defending them.

Those who went out into the streets to openly express their frustration with the breakdown of law and order, the denial of constitution and human rights, the increasing deterioration and distortion of electoral system, and the rising living cost in the absence of comparative increases in incomes, were told that they were being “un-Malaysian”.

Jul 1, 2008

Dr M's Idol

Mahatma Gandhi: A peace-loving person

When a Malaysian singer Salamiah Hassan was asked what she would like to reborn if given the second opportunity her reply was, "I would choose to born as Mahatma Gandhi because he is peace loving person." What a noble choice of the singer. I really respected her answer. The almost same question asked to Tun Dr Mahathir

Compare this to Mahathir’s choice of an idol. Not for him Mahatma Gandhi, Lincoln, or Mandela. He was on record as having said that his idol is Bollywood star Sharukh Khan. SK’s song and dance consists mainly of chasing some buxom damsel round flower beds and trees in a park. Wonder if Dr M envies SK. He should never even imagine himself chasing a damsel round trees and playing hide and seek, given his heart condition. It would indeed be life threatening.

SK is one of 150 million Muslims, happy, peace and prosperous in secular nation India. Wonder Dr M envies freedom that SK enjoys in India. Sharukh Khan’s wife, Gauri is a Hindu and his two children are brought up as Hindus. Possibly, Dr M in his heart, hope that one day Malaysia will be liberal, cultured and civilized enough to grant its citizens free choice of religion as guaranteed in Malaysian Constitution.

When SK was asked about the possibility of his entering politics world, he replied, “I am not interested in selfless work.” Perhaps, after all, SK and Dr M have something common. Think about it!

Jun 30, 2008

Turn off The TV! But Are All TV Programmes Useless?

We are watching too much TV. We waste our precious time by watching many channels that broadcast a variety of propaganda, self dreams and illusions. Bombarded with thousands of images daily as they sit passively in front of the television set, TV is the mother of inner battles in all human beings. It is slowly killing the mental capacity of our future generation to sustain reading. An uncritical mind is a productive ground for mental colonisation. Print and broadcast media are powerful tools of propaganda. While many Malaysian parents struggle to have their children read well so that they may not be continuously confused and brain dead, TV is producing more and more programmes that making children have four eyes.

Bollywood is an industry. Malaysians especially have been conditioned to love Hindustani movies because they have been around since the early days. Many Malaysians are of the south Indian stock, and therefore Bollywood helps Malaysians get stoned glued to such programmes in the modern age.

Finally, I would like to state that the live telecast of the Malaysian parliamentary debates is good for the nation. Political accountability can contribute to higher levels of civic consciousness. Our elected representatives are presenting their credibility by debating on the major issues . It will be a good way to educate Malaysians, especially the younger generation of the political process, participatory democracy, ethics of politics, intellect, and of powerful expressions. I hope this is the first step to the promising world of high-quality TV programmes.