MCA Youth: “More research required for PLKN 3.0 to be more effective”

WHILE the proposed re-introduction of the National Service Training Programme (PLKN) is commendable, several areas need to be thoroughly researched so that the implementation of the programme will be more effective.

Incoming MCA National Youth deputy chairman Mike Chong Yew Chuan was referring to the recent announcement by Defence Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday (Oct 9) that the programme will be making a comeback soon with a new training approach where trainees will undergo training at military camps.

Mohamad also said the re-introduced programme – dubbed the PLKN 3.0 – will save on government expenditure from more than RM500 mil previously to under RM100 mil.

Mike Chong Yew Chuan

“MCA Youth is always supportive of any programme which aims to develop and benefit the young generation of our nation,” Chong said in a statement today (Oct 11).

“While the proposed re-introduction of the programme in commendable, there are several areas that need to be thoroughly researched to ensure that its implementation will be more effective in achieving its goals.”

According to Chong, the public perception of the “military training module” needs to be tackled, adding that it is expected that not every parent would desire their child to be subjected to “bootcamp training”.

“The relevant modules need to be defined in detail and evaluated taking into account the views of parents and guardians of the students,” he added.

Chong further noted that the percentage ratio between military training (90%) and citizenship training (10%) appears to be significantly imbalance.

“Therefore, the main mission of producing a nation-loving generation infused with elements of patriotism and the spirit of unity among Malaysian teenagers regardless of race, religion or background should be prioritised, as compared to modules that focus on the physical aaspects or endurance of the participants’ human body,” he said.

Chong also suggested that opportunities for direct recruitment or absorption into any uniformed forces should be opened to any trainee who displays potential and keenness to join upon the conclusion of the programme.

“Their intake process should be simplified minus having to undergo any bureaucracy which would only discourage them from pursuing their respective interests,” he remarked.

Meanwhile, Chong said MCA Youth takes note of the views from various quarters regarding the revival of PLKN 3.0, including the timing and financial implications of the programme at a time when the nation is confronted with economic uncertainty.

“Nevertheless, MCA Youth is confident that all quarters agree that the effort to produce competent national leaders instilled with patriotism par excellence for the future is an important agenda for our country,” Chong stressed.

“It cannot be denied that the previous PLKN programme contained some weaknesses. However, MCA Youth is confident that the special committee established by the Defence Ministry will be able to find a solution to ensure that these problems will not recur this time.” – Oct 11, 2023


Main pic credit: The Star

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