KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 15 – Member of Parliament for Kulai Teo Nie Ching today refuted a statement by MIC President Tan Sri Vigneswaran that some of the matriculation seats allocated to Indian students in 2018 were given to Chinese students.
Vigneswaran made the statement when asked on the issue of 200 straight-A Indian students being denied of matriculation seats for this year (end of July intake) during an interview on an online Tamil news site, Vanakkam Malaysia.
According to Vigneswaran, the problem of reduced matriculation seats for Indian students arose in 2018 when the then Deputy Education Minister Teo had given 1,100 seats from the 2,200 seats meant for Indian students to Chinese students and this led to the current practiced quota for the seats allocation.
He said that MIC had sought the matriculation seats for Indian students for a long time and had finally got the allocation and it had slowly gone up to slightly above 2,000 but this came down following the change of government in 2018.
Teo in her reply to Vigneswaran disputed that the Pakatan Harapan government had only reserved 1,200 seats in matriculation for Indian students.
“In fact, 1,991 Indian students received offer to study in Matriculation in 2019/2020.”
She also said that if it was a cabinet decision or policy decision made in 2018, there was no one to stop MIC from asking the government to return the 2,200 seats now.
“How many Indian students were offered seats in the Matriculation program in 2020/2021, 2021/2022 and 2022/2023?
“In a Parliamentary reply to one of my questions, the current Minister of Education said that the allocated seats for Indian students for 2020/2021 was only 3.72% which translates to about 1,110 seats. And
I have all the reasons to believe this is the reason why 200 straight As Indian students not getting any offer from Matriculation this year.”
In her statement, Teo also raised the issue of reduced allocation for Tamil schools in the Budget of 2021 and 2022, saying that instead of getting RM100 million, Tamil schools only received RM64.77 million, a reduction of RM35.23 million.
In the same interview, Vigneswaran said MIC was looking at ways how it could raise the number of Indian matriculation students including via the offer of MIC-owned college facilities in accommodating the students.
Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for Klang Charles Santiago, told Weekly Echo that he has yet to receive any response to his letter dated Aug 2 to the Education Minister seeking a discussion on the plight of the Indian students who had failed to enter the matriculation programme.
Charles, who was instrumental in the establishment of the newly formed Selangor Indian Consultative Council (SICC), which is to be headed by Menteri Besar Selangor, said he had written to the minister following an earlier letter to the ministry on July 28.
He added that there had been no response from the minister “despite emails, tweeter and direct message to his phone.”
Since the Malaysian Matriculation Programme began in 1998, the quota of 90:10 (Bumi:Non Bumi) has been retained for entry into the programme.
Weekly Echo reported the issue on July 25th (https://www.weekly-echo.com/more-than-200-straight-a-indian-students-rejected-for-matriculation-ngo/).