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Email to all Ministers tomorrow why they should take collective responsibility for UM and USM’s disastrous plunge in the 2005 Top 200 Universities Ranking and give it top priority at Wednesday’s Cabinet


Media Statement(2)

by Lim Kit Siang  

(Petaling Jaya
, Sunday): I will send an email to all Ministers tomorrow to explain they should take collective responsibility for  the disastrous plunge of University of Malaya (UM) and Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)  in the Times Higher Education Supplement (THES) World University Ranking 2005 on the Top 200 Universities, which saw UM falling  80 places from 89th to 169th position while USM fell more than 89 places from 111th position and got  knocked out of the Top 200 Universities bracket altogether.

I will remind all the Ministers of the principle of collective ministerial responsibility for the deep and worsening higher education crisis, which would not permit anyone of them to distance himself from the higher education crisis  and just blame the whole mess on one or two persons, such as the Higher Education Minister, Datuk Dr. Shafie Salleh and the Cabinet-rank Special Higher Education  Envoy, Datuk Seri Effendi Norwawi.

It is for this reason why at the Cabinet meeting on  Wednesday, Ministers must individually and collectively address the acute problem of  Malaysia’s prolonged and worsening crisis of higher education, as well as the scandalous response of the University of Malaya Vice Chancellor Prof. Dr. Datuk Hashim Yaacob to the latest THES World University Ranking which made  a national and international joke of UM as well as Malaysia.

At the June centennial celebrations of University of Malaya, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak expressed the hope that University of Malaya could join the ranks of the world’s Top 50 Universities.

The Cabinet should realise that the challenge  facing UM is not whether to achieve the breakthrough to be among the world’s Top 50 Universities, but to avoid suffering the fate of USM of being knocked out of the Top 200 Universities Ranking under the Ninth Malaysia Plan beginning next year.

The  Parliamentary Opposition Leader’s Office tomorrow will seek an appointment for me to meet up  with Shafie next week before Parliament reconvenes the following Monday on November 14 as I would like to know whether the Higher Education Minister has any fresh and new strategy to restore excellence, quality and standards to UM, USM and other public universities in the country as well the nation’s international  standing and good reputation  for our system of higher education.



*  Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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