Wong: ‘Watching-in-brief’ task a great challenge


Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh

KUCHING: Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh is looking forward to his new task as ‘watching-in-brief’ on education, especially focussing on Chinese schools in Sarawak.

Describing it as a ‘great challenge’, the Public Health and Environment Minister and deputy secretary-general of SUPP said it would not be an easy job but he would try his best to solve problems affecting Chinese schools.

He also said he would be part of a team headed by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang to look after education affairs in the state.

“Whatever problems there are, they have been there for quite some time. We cannot expect the problems to be
solved overnight. But we (Wong and the rest in the team) will try our best,” he said when contacted yesterday.

Wong, who is also Second Finance Minister, said he was also looking forward to working together with Jabu as they would both be holding watching-in-brief on Mission schools as well.

He added that this role came naturally for them as they both went to Mission schools.

Asked on how they would carry out their roles, he said the team would hold regular dialogues with board of management of schools to discuss their problems and needs.

“We would have dialogues with management committees of Chinese primary schools and secondary schools, the Chinese independent schools and the Mission schools, to get feedback and to see what we can do for them,” he said.

The new task for Wong was announced by Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud to reporters after the monthly State Cabinet meeting at Wisma Bapa Malaysia on Thursday.

Taib had said that Wong and Jabu would work together on Chinese and Mission schools.

Since education is still a federal matter, Taib said the team or committee headed by Jabu was needed to ensure smooth implementation of education policies in the state.

It was also mentioned that the committee was proposed by Wong during the Cabinet meeting, and it was passed and agreed by everyone present.