Ridiculous And Gross Injustice That Top Students Who Have Done No Wrong Must Appeal To Fumbling And Incompetent PSD Officials To Be Awarded Scholarships.(en/cn)

Once again, the Malaysian public is serenaded with fancy promises by the Federal Government, only to be brought down again by incompetency in policy implementation. The Federal Government’s promise of a meritocratic award of JPA scholarships to every single student that achieves 8A+s and above is now overshadowed by the bungling ineptitude of the delivery system.

Deputy Education Minister Wee Ka Siong blamed Public Service Department(PSD) officials for failing to follow Cabinet criteria in selecting scholarship recipients. As a result, many qualified applicants failed to obtain grants while those who students who performed worse were given scholarships instead.

Wee also added that there were a number of instances where straight A+ students had been denied scholarships and instead were only offered placements in matriculation programmes with loans. Meanwhile, students who obtained 4+s were awarded scholarships to the United States.

This gross blunder is totally unacceptable and should be rejected by all Malaysians. What’s worse, the solution offered by Deputy Minister Wee Ka Siong has only compounded the problem and highlighted the severe lack of empathy within the walls of Putrajaya. He has suggested that students should accept whatever they are given first, and then submit an appeal to the JPA for review.

Why should the people who have not done any wrong be the ones who have to appeal? This is not only ridiculous but a gross injustice that top students who have done no wrong, must appeal to fumbling and incompetent PSD officials to be awarded scholarships. Should not responsibility be placed upon the JPA to correct their errors? This is a case of punishing the victim instead of the perpetrator. If the Federal Government thinks they can sweep this issue under the carpet, they are wrong.

This is exactly the kind of issue that has contributed to the growing national brain drain problem. How are young Malaysians supposed to believe that they live in a fair and just society when such straightforward matters cannot be conducted in a transparent and proper manner? It appears that instead of attempting to win the hearts and minds of talented young Malaysians, the Federal Government is intent on victimising and ostracising them. Blame should be squarely placed upon the shoulders of the Federal Government if this scandal leads to even more bleeding of talent.

We demand that a full investigation is carried out, and that those students with deserving results be immediately given scholarships without the need for them to demean themselves by appealing when it is not their mistake in the first place. Further JPA officials responsible should be punished as an example to other incompetent officials of zero tolerance for those who fail to practice competency, accountability and transparency.

Clearly the Federal government should go back to basics in employing competent government officials. 3 aspects are important for professional service. One, a good or effective system in place. Two a positive work ethic and attitude. Thirdly, inculcating a team spirit. How can the Economic Transformation Programme(ETP) efforts to attract and retain human talent work when the Federal government officials can not even get it right the simple job of offering scholarships to the best students and instead awarding it to the worst?

Press Statement By DAP Secretary-General And MP For Bagan Lim Guan Eng In Kuala Lumpur On 20 May 2011.

———— Chinese Translation ————–

民主行动党秘书长兼峇眼区国会议员林冠英于2011年5月20日在吉隆坡发表声明:

无罪无过的优秀生必须向公共服务局那些笨拙及无能的官员上诉,才能得到奖学金,这简直是天大的笑话和极度不公平的事情。

联邦政府对马来西亚人民所做的美丽承诺,再一次因政策执行不力而落空。联邦政府原本已经答应依照成绩表现,颁发公共服务局奖学金给每一名考获8个A+的学生,如今已经被恶劣、笨拙的公共服务系统弄得一塌糊涂。

副教育部长魏家祥责怪公共服务局的官员没有遵从内阁的指示,遴选奖学金得主。结果,很多符合资格的申请者被淘汰,反应那些成绩表现较差的学生获得奖学金。

魏家祥也指出,很多考获全科A+的学生不但得不到奖学金,反而只被选中以贷款方式就读大学预科班。而那些考获4A的学生,竟然获得前往美国的奖学金。

这种荒唐的事情令人无法接受,所有马来西亚人必须拒绝这种做法。更糟的是,副教育部长魏家祥所提供的解决方案只是雪上加霜,也突显了布城的高墙内的官僚没有同理心。他竟然建议学生,不论他们获得什么都先接受,然后再向公共服务局上诉。

为什么没有做错事的人要上诉?无罪无过的优秀生必须向公共服务局那些笨拙及无能的官员上诉,才能得到奖学金,这简直是天大的笑话和极度不公平的事情。难道公共服务局不应该首先为负起纠正错误的责任?这是典型“受害者被罚而犯错者无罪”。如果联邦政府以为他们可以把这个课题扫入地毯下,那么他们就错了。

正是这样的问题,导致我国人才外流越来越严重。政府连如此直接了当的问题都不能透明地、妥当地处理,我们要年轻一代的马来西亚人怎么相信他们活在一个公平与公正的社会?看来,联邦政府并不是努力地争取年青人才,反而企图把罪名推给他们、孤立他们。如果这项丑闻导致更多人才出走,联邦政府应该当当正正地负起责任。

我们要求当局全面调查这件事,那些符合资格的学生应该在不需要自我贬低、跑去上诉的情况下,即刻获得补发奖学金,毕竟错不在于他们。还有,负责的公共服务局官员必须接受处分,杀一儆百,警惕那些不称职的官员,绝不容忍不称职、无公信力、不透明的官员。

很明显地,联邦政府应该回到原点,雇用称职的政府官员。专业的公共服务必须具备三个条件:其一、良好及有效率的制度。其二、积极的工作文化和态度。其三、培养团队精神。联邦政府官员如果连颁发奖学金给优秀生这样简单的事情都做不到,反而把奖学金给了次等生,经济转型计划(ETP)还要谈什么吸引人才、留住人才?

林冠英

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