The budget cut will also affect 600 part-time lecturers and 8,000 education assistants
by LYDIA NATHAN / pic by ARIF KARTONO
THE Budget 2021 cut for Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) will create a negative impact for the development of Bumiputera education, according to Parti Pejuang Tanah Air.
In the recent budget announcement, the government had proposed to slash almost 7% of year-on-year funding for the university from RM1.86 billion to RM1.73 billion, a decrease of RM129 million, drawing criticism from many parties.
In a statement yesterday, Pejuang said it was surprised by the cuts made especially to UiTM while many Parliament members questioned it during the budget debate.
“The effect of these cuts will bring a negative impact on the Bumiputera education. UiTM vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohd Azraai Kassim said the budget cut will affect 600 part-time lecturers and 8,000 education assistants,” the party said.
It also said UiTM director of Media and Information Studies Centre Prof Datuk Dr Ismail Sualman noted that the cut will stunt the future of UiTM as an established educational institution which was aspiring to become one of the 500 best universities.
Pejuang questioned the reasoning behind the government’s move to cut funding in this manner.
“Why is the Perikatan Nasional government, who is supposed to fight for race and religion, causing the loss of education for the children of our nation?
“Why allocate funds to bodies and give priority to Penggerak Komuniti Tempatan (PeKT) and Special Affairs Department (JASA) whose aims are political while the nation’s children have to beg in their own country to get quality education?” it said.
Pejuang added that the 2021 budget should be rejected unless realignment can be made without pawning off the future of the country.
“The fight for religion and race is not just a slogan to shout, but should be translated into policy and administration,” it said.
Meanwhile, the cuts particularly for UiTM, have been gaining traction on social media with many experts within the industry stating that the education sector should be the last to receive budget cuts, if any.
Yesterday, The Malaysian Reserve reported that UiTM is likely to terminate its part-time lecturer programme that employs up to 600 lecturers, or up to 7% of its 8,000 teaching staff nationwide, and trim its strategic plan after funding was slashed under Budget 2021.
Mohd Azraai said the university will have to revise its UiTM2025 strategic plan which was just launched in February this year.
Read our earlier report