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Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Prime Minister must pay more attention to the unravelling of the PKFZ saga

DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong Dr Tan Seng Giaw calls on the Prime Minister Dato' Seri Najib to show that he really pays attention to the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) scandal and the effective steps to be taken to overcome it.

On 30.7.2009, Dr Tan has been following the Prime Minister's interest or lack of it in the PKFZ saga.

The ad hoc committee on administration and corporate governance set up by the Transport Ministry discovered that the Port Klang Authority (PKA) management did not consult the board on PKFZ decisions and the board did not take notice of it.

The committee, chaired by Transparency International Malaysia president Datuk Paul Low, recommended the PKA board to implement eight changes to improve its own management and the running of PKFZ.

Meanwhile, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), described the handling of the PKFZ project as incompetent, needing further investigations. Former Transport Tan Sri Chan Kong Choy appeared at the the PAC hearing yesterday, explaining his issuance of three letters for the project. He was on sick leave, and he showed the medical certificate.

Najib has yet to show his interest in the PKFZ saga. It may be that he quietly indicates his displeasure on the issue. When the Cabinet approved the soft loan of RM 4.6 billion to PKA for the PKFZ, he was the Deputy Prime Minister. The sum with interest amounts to RM7.5billion. If the incompetence continues, it may go up to RM 12.5 billion.

The Prime Minister has to portray his seriousness over the investigation on the PKFZ saga and the effectiveness of the measures taken as well as the consideration on the need to form a Royal Commission to do the job.

Dr Tan Seng Giaw

Friday, July 17, 2009

An independent Inquiry into the death at the Selangor MACC

DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong Dr Tan Seng Giaw calls on the Federal Government to carry out a truly independent inquiry into the death of Teoh Beng Hock at the Selangor Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in Shah Alam on 16.7.2009.

Dr Tan comments on the death of Teoh who was a political assistant for the DAP Seri Kembangan state assemblyperson Ean Yong Hian Wah. He was questioned as a witness.

MACC must be fair, just and impartial. It must fight corruption in the country effectively.

Apparently, at 5 pm on 15.7.2009, Teoh was called to the MACC and discharged at 3.45 am on 16.7.2009. The state MACC is at levels 14 & 15 of the Plaza Masalam complex.

Teoh's body was discovered at the bottom of the office building about 1.30 pm on 16.7.2009.

We need a truly independent inquiry into the tragedy which is a mystery.

Dr Tan Seng Giaw

Friday, July 10, 2009

Better training system for teachers

DAP National Deputy Chairman and MP for Kepong Dr Tan Seng Giaw calls on the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to review the teacher training system including postgraduate training scheme to ensure the quality of teachers such as English, Mathematics and Science teachers.

There are 27 teachers' training institutes. The system of training must be improved.

On 10.7.2009, Dr Tan comments on the Prime Minister's aim of making Malaysians more proficient in English after going back to the policy to use Bahasa Malaysia to teach Science and Mathematics. The DeputyPrime Minister and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced on 8.7.2009 that the teaching of the two subjects would be reverted to mother tongue instead of English.

After Tun Mahathir implemented the teaching of Science and Mathematics using English in 2003, the scraping of the policy after six years and over 3 billion ringgit gives rise to complications such as teachers and students taking some time to get used to using mother tongue for the two subjects.

The reversion to the original method will begin in 2012. Is the period of three years used to overcome the complications arising from the change in policy?

We would like the standard of education including English, Science andMaths to go up. The Edcuation Act talks about attaining world standard.

People such as Tun Mahathir do not like it. Certain organizations such as the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka and the Dong Jiao Zhong welcome the change. After teaching Science and Maths in English for six years, the standard of English goes up by 3% and the standard of Science and Maths does not go up much, if any. There are many factors that include the quality of teachers. The Government should make known these factors.

There is a formula 2-4-3 for Chinese schools: 2 periods of English, 4 Maths and 3 Science per week. How does the Education Ministry deal with this?

While there are good teachers, the standard of some need to be improved. Out of 386,000 teachers in the country, 67,000 are English teachers. Some can scarcely speak English.

The Government wants to increase the number of English teachers by13,933, totalling 81,413. This includes 1,000 foreign teachers and 500 retired local teachers. Whether it is local or foreign teachers, the most important thing is that they must be competent.

Dr Tan Seng Giaw