06 February 2009

Skim Perkhidmatan Pensyarah

Semasa sesi dialog Majlis Perdana Perkhidmatan Awam antara Pak Lah dengan kakitangan awam pada Rabu, 4 Febuari 2009 lepas, seorang ahli akademik telah menimbulkan mengenai Research U dan Apex U. Beliau telah menyatakan RU dan AU nampak gah dari segi peningkatan dana penyelidikan tetapi tidak ada banyak perubahan di aspek lain seperti skim perkhidmatan staf universiti. Bagi para akademik, mereka ditekan untuk membanyakkan penyelidikan dan banyakkan paper tetapi tidak diberi lebih banyak peluang dan ganjaran untuk naik pangkat. Ini bukan sahaja dihadapi oleh RU dan AU tapi juga universiti yang bercita-cita untuk jadi RU.

GERAK bercadang untuk menulis satu kertaskerja mengenai penambahbaikan skim perkhidmatan pensyarah untuk diserahkan kepada Pak Lah dan KPT pada hujung bulan ini. Tolong beri pandangan dan cadangan anda untuk satu skim perkhidmatan pensyarah yang mampun menarik dan mengekalkan para akademik didalamnya.

Antara persoalannya ialah:
Perlukah diadakan skim perkhidmatan pensyarah yang berbeza untuk AU, RU dan U biasa?
Atau satu skim untuk semua?
Patutkah pensyarah AU dan RU mendapat ganjaran yang lebih?
Apakah ganjaran yang adil untuk pensyarah?

05 February 2009

UUCA Amendments 2008

GERAK Press Statement on the amendments to the University and University Colleges Act

18 August 2008

GERAK, a registered society that has been actively supported by academic staff associations and unions of all public institutions of higher learning, and hence being a voice of the more than 23,000 academicians in these institutions, is of the opinion that in order for Malaysian universities to improve to the “world class” standard touted by the government, the following elements must be in place:

- Academic freedom for staff to teach, conduct research and disseminate research findings and opinions, without fear or favour
- Student autonomy to associate and express opinions in a free and open manner in order to expand their intellectual and social horizons thus ensuring graduates who are worldly, and intellectually mature
- A university culture based on intellectual integrity and academic merit
- Autonomy of universities to make decisions in the best interest of academia and society and not political interests

GERAK is pleased that the Ministry of Higher Education has started the process of amending the University and University Colleges Act (UCCA); however we are doubtful that the amendments will make any significant changes that will lead to the elements mentioned above. Although input from GERAK was obtained in July 2006, the amendments that are being put forward in the proposed bill have not satisfactorily addressed many of the concerns voiced two years ago.

In particular, we are concerned about governance, integrity and academic freedom and among the matters we are concerned with are the following:
- The committee proposed by the amending bill to choose the Vice Chancellor is a vague entity with no clear terms of reference and no indication of its membership. It is uncertain if they will be a true “search committee” which has the freedom to advertise for the post of VC or whether they will play a mere short listing role, working with candidates proposed by the Ministry. It is also unclear if the Minister has final discretion ij the choice of VC.
- The same worries and doubts apply to the composition of the Board of Directors, Senate and the selection of Deputy Vice Chancellors and Deans as well as the rules and criteria that will be used in the selection and running of these governing bodies.
- On the face of it, students have greater freedom to join organisations; however the restrictions on joining political parties and “illegal organisations”, raises problems. Regarding political parties, there is no logical reason provided in the explanatory notes, why a student has fewer rights than a non-student citizen. Regarding “illegal organisations”, this is a broad group which could include bona fide NGOs which have trouble registering with the registrar of Societies. Furthermore, the VC still has very broad discretionary powers to name any group or organisation as banned for students.
- Student expression is limited to “properly organised” forums like seminars etc. This goes against Article 10 of the Constitution which guarantees a right of speech.
- The proposed new section 15D which states that students charged with a registrable offence may be suspended by the VC goes against the principle of the presumption of innocence.
- The proposed removal of section 16A of the UUCA means that all staff disciplinary matters is now under the Statutory Bodies Discipline and Surcharge Act (SBDSA). The SBDSA is a law which covers the entire civil service and it is very restrictive, especially on the freedom of expression. Academics in public universities, although being paid by the government, are working under very different circumstances from civil servants and thus should not be subject to the same disciplinary rules

Due to the very short time the draft bill has been available for discussion and based on the serious concerns above, GERAK implores that the bill amending the UCCA is not debated in Parliament until further public discussion can take place in order for any changes to the UCCA to be meaningful and for it to be able to move our universities towards “world class” standards, which GERAK believes is what both the universities and the government wishes for.

Prof. Wan Abdul Manan Wan Muda
Pergerakan Tenaga Akademik Malaysia (GERAK)
(Malaysian Academics Movement)

03 February 2009


Khabarnya ramai diantara kita tertekan oleh universiti kita untuk mengejar atau mengekalkan status Apex atau Research Universiti. Kita menghadapi tekanan amat berat untuk menambahkan penerbitan jurnal ISI. Penerbitan jenis lain dipandang rendah. Buku-buku tak main. Ini supaya universiti masing-masing nampak baik semasa audit RU tahun depan dan juga untuk ranking THES. Ada juga universiti sampai tidak lagi terima permohonan PhD/Master dari mereka dengan CGPA kurang dari 3.0. Pemohon PhD yang dah ada master pun tidak diterima jika CGPA masa undergraduate kurang dari 3.0. Nak jadi pensyarah bukan hanya perlu ada PhD tapi juga CGPA masa undergraduate mesti lebih dari 3.0. Tak boleh 'taubat' selepas dapat CGPA rendah.
Dimanakah dia kesarjanaan di universiti kita? Adakah perlu kita ikut telunjuk THES-QS, sebuah money-making, non-academic organisation?


12 January 2009

Mr. Ehud Olmert
Prime Minister of Israel


Please Stop the Bombing and Massacre of Palestinians

We, the undersigned, representing more than 50,000 academics in various institutions of higher education in Malaysia, would like to record our sadness and dissatisfaction in the way the War of Gaza is being conducted. We deplore any loss of human lives whoever it may be, but also find it deplorable that 100 Palestinians have to die for every dead Israeli in this very one-sided ‘war’. No amount of explanations can justify the fact that the Israelis, with their protector, the USA, are killing innocent civilians, including women and children.

We are specifically saddened with the news of the bombing of the Islamic University of Gaza. With the bombing, the already minimal facilities for education of thousands of students in Gaza, has now come to an end. So too the continued strangling of Gaza will end the education of many young Palestinians. This in turn will effect the future development of Palestine and Gaza in particular.

To argue who is right and who is wrong in the war would be a never ending affair. However, we demand that this war be fought with full compliance of the Geneva Conventions. We demand that all civilian and civilian buildings (houses, mosques, hospitals) be protected and not to be targets of your military aggressions. In particular, we demand that you and your government show respect for the sanctity of academic institutions such as universities and schools. History has shown many times that a civilization would start to decline when schools/places of learning are destroyed and books burned.

Thank you for listening.

Prof. Wan Manan Wan Muda,
Chairman, Malaysian Academics Movement (MOVE/GERAK)

Faisal Mustaffa,
General Secretary, Private Higher Education Institutes Academic Staff Union (KAPTS) <faisal@bukitbendera.org>

Prof. Dr. Mohamed Aslam Haneef,
President, International Islamic University Malaysia Academic Staff Association (IIUMASA) mdaslam@iiu.edu.my

Abdul Halim B. Abdul Majid
Secretary General, Academic Staf Association of Universiti Utara Malaysia (PERSATU) mailto:ahalim@uum.edu.my

Assoc. Prof. Dr Yahaya Ibrahim
President, Academic Staff Association of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (PKAUKM) ya@ukm.my

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Junedah Sanusi
President, University of Malaya Academic Staff Association (PKAUM)

Prof Dr. Omar bin Shawkataly
Vice President, Academic and Administrative Staff Association, Universiti Sains Malaysia (PKAP) <omarsa@usm.my>

Dr. Mohd Hasnain Bin Md Hussain,
Acting President, Academic Staff Association, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (PPAU) <hhasnain@frst.unimas.my >

Ab Latiff Ishak
President, Academic Staff Union Universiti Teknologi MARA (MITASA)


Datuk Abdullah Ahmad Badawi
Prime Minister of Malaysia

Academic Organisations

Media Organisations