When it comes to nation-building via the education system, racial and extreme religious bigotry have no place in it. However when it is institutionalised by the Government especially when it comes to exams, then it is a very bad decision and steps backwards. Image source: Daily Mail
Remember when a certain political party-controlled media blasted the non-Malays for questioning the Malay’s special rights? Or when some politicians played the racial card to garner support from one particular race? The problem is and very often, the same media or politicians failed to mention why there have been some strong voices questioning the said policies.
No one from the ruling front, although they know this is true, has admitted openly that sometimes, in order to make things better, certain things must be questioned and criticised.
Certainly, any ideal policies that promote equality, improvement of quality of life and elimination of poverty are worth to be pursued aggressively. But the thing is, as with any “good” policies out there, good implementation and strict enforcement is something else to be desired. It is certainly something to be questioned when the same policies are abused and mismanaged to enrich a very few.
The concept of “Ketuanan Melayu” which has been actively pursued by the ruling political party, for example, has been in question for many reasons, simply because its meaning of the concept has not been conclusive, especially when the same people who are promoting this concept are also promoting other concepts (such as 1Malaysia) that are in direct violation of the first. Sometimes people get so confused.
But that is not what I wanted to elaborate on here.
I don’t know why but the “Ketuanan Melayu” concept crossed my mind when I read Citizen Nades’s theSun column titled “Learning the law the wrong way” and the part that got me concerned is this:-
The sad end to this saga is that the examiner who failed this student and 17 others was ordered to re-mark and make them pass.
She refused and is now on the streets because her conscience refused to allow her to do so. She had set her own grading criteria which was approved by the university and stuck to it.
One student got just four marks out of a possible 60 and for doing her job religiously, the examiner was labelled a “pengkhianat” (traitor).
The column did not say for sure why the examiner was asked to remark on the failed students and make them pass. It could be due to certain constraints in the law school’s standards and quality.
Citizen Nades talked about law students and highlighted the scary thought of having these failed law students handling multi-million contracts for the government in future. What happens if the same thing is happening in medical schools? Failed medical students who one day might be doing open-heart surgery on you or your loved ones.
In the case of the law students in Citizen Nades’ column, what should have happened is that failed students should have left failed and booted from law school. They never had the right qualities to be lawyers in the first place. They should not be forcefully passed, just to show the “right numbers” on some statistics.
At the very extreme, allow the retest several times but if in the end, these students still fail, then leave them failed. Their destiny lies elsewhere.