Opposition MPs from seven political parties called for Education Minister Datuk Radzi Jidin and his two deputy ministers to step down from their posts due to vague directives on how schools should operate amidst the pandemic.
The education committee of Pakatan Harapan and other Opposition parties have issued a joint statement highlighting the 150,000 laptops that were promised to be given to the students which until now remains unfulfilled.
This statement bears the signatures of the eight MPs as well as the committee’s chairman Maszlee Malik’s signature who is the MP of Simpang Renggam and also the previous education minister.
According to the statement, teachers, parents, guardians, students and the public are all feeling concerned and worried as the Covid-19 cases related to the clusters involving schools continue to be on the rise.
The MPs noted that the reopening of schools were too hurried which was done just after home-based teaching and learning (PDPR) was announced. They said that there was also lack of strategic planning and learning mechanisms that should be followed in schools in the event a case will be confirmed.
Although it was a good thing to have the school management and teachers join efforts when it comes to the compliance to the SOP considering the sake of the children’s education, it was noted by the MPs that the Education Ministry has not given clear directives to guide the schools in operating during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“What is happening now, many of those managing the schools have lost direction when there is an increase of cases at school but they are not equipped for home-based teaching and learning when schools are closed. Further, the giving of 150,000 laptops as promised by the government is still yet to be seen,” the MPs said.
Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Abdul Aziz previously announced in his speech on November 2020 that there is going to be a pilot project where contribution of RM150 million from government-linked companies and government-linked investment companies is to be made into the Tabung Cerdik in order to provide 150,000 students in 500 schools with laptops for the purposes of online learning.
The Education Ministry was heavily criticized by the Opposition MPs for lacking plans of action against the matter in which the MPs call for the ministers to step down. “On this awareness, we represent all MPs from Pakatan Harapan and other Opposition parties in urging for the education minister and his two deputies that are seen as failing in carrying out their duties as hoped for by the public to immediately step down for the future of the public and our beloved country,” they concluded, referring to the two deputy education ministers Muslimin Yahaya and Datuk Mah Hang Soon