Monday, October 19, 2009

UM students in trouble for inviting politicians

16 October, 2009
by charlessantiago
Source : Malaysian Mirror
Thursday, 15 October 2009 16:48

KLANG – A black cloud is looming over eight students of the Universiti Malaya, who face stern action from the university for inviting politicians to attend their campus functions.

Two of them face disciplinary action for allegedly inviting the Selangor Mentri Besar’s political secretary, Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, to open the annual general meeting of the UM’s Muslim Students Society (PMIUM), without the university’s approval.

The others have been called for questioning over their invitation to several politicians to act as jury for a Chinese language debate on current political issues.

The university charged that the eight students had breached the campus regulations as well as the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971 by inviting the politicians to grace their events.

MP claims UUCA infringes students’ rights
UM disciplinary committee chairman Prof Faisal Ali said the committee will determine if the students had acted against the Act, which provides expulsion as the most severe punishment for offenders.

According to the UM students’ representative council, the student affairs department had already given its approval for the debate and was also aware of the topics to be discussed and who the judges would be.

A student spokesman added, however, the department said it would only allow the debate as a ‘one off’ thing that should not be repeated in future as it involved politicians'.

Klang MP Charles Santiago said the UUCA is a controversial Act and contained articles that were against the students’ basic human rights, including the right to free expression.

The irony faced by the government
“Universities and institutes of higher learning should encourage intellectual activities that do not infringe on the students’ academic freedom and the campus autonomy."

“Students should be encouraged and motivated in the way that their right to think and voice up is not affected by threats of action against them."

“The irony is that whenever the government finds a university’s world ranking is slipping, it immediately wants to rectify the situation by amending the Act to give universities more autonomous power and to get students to be more innovatve in their thinking,” he said.

Santiago added that ‘rules and regulations’ will continue to dominate the minds of university managers for as long as the universities are not given their true autonomy.

He said the action against the eight UM students had stunted the joy of seeing the UM returning back to the list of the worlds’ 200 best universities.

Santago urged the UM to withdraw disciplinary action against the students and the Higher Education Ministry to amend the UUCA by taking away all articles deemed offensive to academic freedom and the student’s basic human rights. – Malaysian Mirror.

1Malaysia is supposed to be a rational and moderate state and society. Unfortunately University students have yet to move into the real state of a modern, developed, cultured society. The students only ask for reasonable freedom, exchanges of ideas and freedom of expression. They were hindered by the draconian law. Blocking their activities won't stop them from thinking ideals and ideas that you don't like. Just like the English proverb : you can pull the horse to the river but you can't ask it to drink...


♥ Lady Mae ♥ said...

pelik la prof,
sbb all these while...
kalau ahli politik daripada mana2 parti kerajaan yg datang merasmikan majlis tak pernah pula ada pihak yang memperbesar-besarkan isu..
malahan pengalaman saya sendiri dlm majlis2 tersebut membuatkan saya rasa meluat dgn sikap ahli2 politik tersebut yang 'mempolitikkan' majlis2 ilmu atau sebagainya...

kalau macam ni smpai bila pun pemikiran politik kita masih lagi kot ditakuk yang lama...

Sains Politik Malaysia said...

kesian dekat pelajar2 tu and the persatuan.. I always thought the Univ is the place where u gain lots of new good experience and knowledge.. but this shows otherwise.. in fact reverse in devt.

esztergrace said...

Wow..didn't know it's that bad. Tq for least I know now..