PTPTN, loans RM18.8 bln, when to pay back, 12.3.2007.
DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong Dr Tan Seng Giaw urges all borrowers of the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) to pay back their loans according to the agreements, so that other students will have a chance to get financial aid to further their studies in public and private institutes of higher learning(IHLs).
Dr Tan is aware that there are PTPTN borrowers who have not repaid the loans.
On 7 March, 2007, the media reported that the Cabinet had approved the proposal from PTPTN to give full loans for more students from families earning less than RM3,000 a month from March 1, 2007. Previously, a student was eligible for a full loan if his or her parents earned less than RM2,000 a month.
For example, a student doing first degree in public IHL gets RM6,500 per annum, private IHL RM16,000 and International Medical University(IMU) RM 20,000. Science students will have additional RM500 a year as an incentive.
There are many scholarships and loans within and outside the country. This is important because education is one of the main factors for the development of a country. PTPTN and MARA have given out loans amounting to billions of ringgits.
According to a report, PTPTN would extend loans to students for Master's courses with an initial fund of RM500 million. More students will take up PTPTN loans.
Up to 31 January, 2007, PTPTN has approved RM18.8 billion for 969,781 students, but it has only collected RM406.6 million from 180,195 students who have completed their degrees. The gap between the amount of loans given out and the amount collected back is huge.
PTPTN is encouraging students to settle their loans such as by making it compulsory for parents or guardians to stand as guarantors for their children's loans. From 1 January, 2008, parents will be required to save in the National Education Savings Scheme before their children can be eligible for loans. Parents earning more than RM2000 a month must save RM3,000 in the scheme and those earning less than RM2,000 a month RM500.
Education cultivates the ability to think, acquiring knowledge, skills, profession and integrity including morals. After completing their degrees, those who do not repay their loans lack integrity. It is morally wrong. A person who has learned to think, to acquire knowlege, skills or profession without integrity is harmful to the society.
Dr Tan Seng Giaw