Tuesday, June 14, 2005


It just dawn upon me that there is a strange similarity between Malaysia and Communist China.

That is, their way of appointing vice chancellors (or university presidents) through political channels.

Viz, Malaysiakini...
'According to the Universities and University Colleges Act, the vice-chancellor is appointed by the minister of higher education. It is unfortunate that we have a system where the minister, in consultation with the prime minister, decides who should be the vice-chancellor of the university. That means the vice-chancellor himself would probably recognise he is rather indebted to the executive for his appointment'.

The one difference is perhaps; the Chinese university presidents and their top guns have no qualms to reveal their party positions in the university list while the Malaysian ones go 'incognito'.

See here for an example.

On a related front, I once read a Singaporean article suggesting that Malaysia is renowned for delayed (re)action.

As in the so-called congratulatory message from the prime minister to Gomez...

'The Prime Minister congratulated me on my appointment and said that he was proud that Malaysians were being given important appointments at international agencies such as the United Nations. He said he felt my research was important and could be used by the Government for policy planning'.

Now, how are we to digest this?

Is the prime minister really sincere in this message?

Is so, why the delay in conveying it?

He should have been among the first, at least the official mouthpieces would report it as such, to hit the ceiling with joy upon hearing the U.N. appointment weeks ago...

To paraphrase a writer I admire...

'The prime minister feigns...'