Govt urged to recognise UEC
by Lee Ya Yun. Posted on January 6, 2011, Thursday
KUCHING: An assistant minister has urged the government to show courage by recognising the United Examination Certification (UEC).
Tan Joo Phoi, who made the call, stressed that the UEC had been a long-drawn educational issue, especially with the Chinese community.
The Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department reasoned that it was high time for the government to officially recognise UEC since Chinese education had grown in importance following the rapid rise of China in recent years.
“It is our hope that UEC be recognised by the government one day. We would continue to work closely with Chinese education advocates in the nation to fight for this acknowledgment, regardless of any challenges and difficulties.
“We always have the strong stand that such recognition should not be politicised or become a racial issue. It is all about education. I think the government should be aware of it and has the courage to take the immediate step,” said Tan at a ceremony to mark the new school session of SM Min Lit Batu Kawa yesterday.
However, he hoped that Chinese secondary schools nationwide would continue to do their part well so that they would have a strong point to persuade the government on this matter.
Tan told those present that the Barisan Nasional government had showed their concern in helping Chinese education through the implementation of various programmes.
For instance, he said, Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud recently agreed to alienate 2,000 hectares of land for Chinese independent schools in the state, as well as to exempt these schools from having to pay
land lease renewal premiums.
“SUPP never forgets our responsibility to support Chinese education. We are always supportive of the development of Chinese primary and secondary schools through more concrete actions, such as, fund allocations.
“We will continue to support Chinese education in the future,” he pledged.
SM Min Lit Batu Kawa, one of five Chinese secondary schools in Kuching, welcomed 40 new students yesterday.
Statewide, 1,322 new students reported to 14 Chinese independent schools this year.