Stu­dent groups in­sist PH de­liver on PTPTN pledge

The Borneo Post (Sabah) - - HOME -

PETALING JAYA: Pakatan Hara­pan’s fail­ure to hon­our its pledge to de­fer fed­eral stu­dent loan re­pay­ments for low-in­come earn­ers is un­ac­cept­able, said stu­dent groups when re­ject­ing the pact’s ex­cuse of weak pub­lic fi­nances.

Af­ter Na­tional Higher Ed­u­ca­tion Fund Cor­po­ra­tion (PTPTN) chair­man Wan Sai­ful Wan Jan cited worse-thanex­pected gov­ern­ment debt as the rea­son, the groups in­sisted that pre­vi­ously avail­able in­for­ma­tion would have shown whether the pledge was pos­si­ble.

Yes­ter­day, an apolo­getic Wan Sai­ful an­nounced that PTPTN can­not cur­rently af­ford to de­fer re­pay­ments for bor­row­ers earn­ing be­low RM4,000 monthly as pledged and said that do­ing so would en­dan­ger the agency’s abil­ity to fund fu­ture stu­dents’ stud­ies.

Gabun­gan Ma­ha­siswa Is­lam Malaysia (Gamis) pres­i­dent Muham­mad Faiz­zud­din Mohd Zai de­scribed the an­nounce­ment as very dis­ap­point­ing.

“Their an­nounce­ment to break the pledge makes them worse than the pre­vi­ous BN (ad­min­is­tra­tion),” he said.

He added that he was also not op­ti­mistic about the pact’s com­mit­ment to ever de­liver on this pledge, but in­sisted that the prom­ise be kept.

Faizud­din said his group plans to start a move­ment to press the PH gov­ern­ment to hon­our the pledge, but did not elab­o­rate.

Univer­sity of Malaya As­so­ci­a­tion of New Youth (Umany) pres­i­dent Wong Yang Ke sim­i­larly re­jected Wan Sai­ful’s ex­pla­na­tion for break­ing the pledge.

Among oth­ers, he noted that this was also the rea­son given by Barisan Na­sional when stu­dents pre­vi­ously de­manded free ter­tiary ed­u­ca­tion.

“It is not that we don’t un­der­stand the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion fac­ing the coun­try. How­ever, it is such an un­healthy be­hav­iour for them to blame their fail­ure to ful­fil their prom­ise on the coun­try’s fi­nances.

“Fur­ther­more, they should con­struct a sus­tain­able plan to sup­port their pledge,’’ he said.

“Till now we only saw them give lip ser­vice yet I don’t a proper plan on ful­fill­ing their pledge. They do not is­sue any steps or de­tails on what they in­tend to do each time they dis­cussed pub­lic poli­cies,’’ he added.

MUHAM­MAD

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