The Kelantan state government has rejected plans to recognise the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) as an entry requirement for the civil service.
Kelantan Menteri Besar Ahmad Yakob said this issue must be approached carefully as it involves Malay supremacy and Malay as the national language.
“It is good for certain quarters to voice such opinions (to reject UEC) before it happens (gets recognition).
“May the sovereignty of the Malay race and language be maintained, as the UEC is seen as an easy way for non-Malays to enter the civil service without being fluent in Malay,” he said today.
He was asked to comment on the contradictory stand taken by Perak Mentri Besar Ahmad Faizal Azumu who supported the UEC. Perak mufti Tan Sri Harussani Zakaria, however, was against it
Ahmad Yakob also said Kelantan would not mock the Federal Constitution and National Education Policy by recognising the UEC.
“We hope more groups would provide feedback to stop the implementation of such policy which contradicts the spirit of the Federal Constitution.
“Such a policy can further promote polarisation,” Ahmad Yakob added.
Harussani yesterday issued a statement saying the UEC could harm national unity, as well as derail the nation’s education policy.
The UEC, which is issued to graduates of Chinese independent high schools, is currently recognised by local private higher education institutions and many universities overseas, as well as the Sarawak and Malacca governments.
Pakatan Harapan in its election manifesto pledged to enable the UEC to be used for entry into public higher education institutions “provided that applicants have a credit in Bahasa Melayu at the SPM level”.
Meanwhile, Ketereh MP Annuar Musa suggested forming a committee comprising parliamentarians from both sides of the divide to discuss the recognition of the UEC.
“I want to suggest a committee consisting of MPs from all sides of the political divide sit down and discuss (this issue),” the BN lawmaker told the media at the Parliament lobby.
“We must look after their interests, if we ‘disown’ them for taking the UEC, then we will lose them to Taiwan, Oxford and elsewhere,” Annuar said.
He said the UEC students should be given the opportunity to join mainstream education.
“All parties should not be emotional and only look at the matter along racial lines.
“When people talk about the UEC, there is a lot of misunderstanding, some people get mixed up.
“I am sure there is a way we can (work things out to) comply with the national education policy,” Annuar said.
“There should be give-and-take. I think that since we achieved independence 60 years ago, it will not be very difficult (to work things out),” he added.
He reminded some parties that the education provided by Chinese independent high schools is aligned with the Federal Constitution’s provisions.
He also noted the United Chinese School Committees’ Association (Dong Zong) may need to tweak the UEC curriculum so it complies with the national education policy and Education Act.
Jul 22, Students Hold Anti-UEC Protest