Query on quota system for entry into local varsities prompt heated discussion on online forum

A QUESTION posed on the Meanwhile in Malaysia (MIM) Facebook forum triggered heated discussion among netizens on the pros and cons of a quota system for higher education.

This started when the poster Jaden Goh queried if Malaysians would accept a quota system based on the population’s racial make-up with the proviso that there be contracts binding them to some form of national service for the privilege of entry into a public university.

One netizen argued that the status quo should be maintained as it was enshrined in the constitution and was for the benefit of the majority, not the minorities.

But her comment was met with numerous retorts who asked if this was to reinforce that Malay students were weak and would perennially require assistance.

Another netizen claimed that previously such a system was already in place.

Many netizens openly queried the above observation and said it was based on wrong assumptions.

Some other netizens said such a system can only be considered when there is equal opportunities and access to quality education at primary and secondary schools.

Many netizens also pointed out that for such a system to work, there should only be a singular education stream, meaning the abolition of vernacular schools.

The varied responses certainly provide much food for thought. Whether for or against, there must be opportunities to sensibly discuss pertinent issues in mature manner without resorting to race baiting comments.

For the moment, it would seem that social media – flawed as it may be – is the platform where such discussions can be held.

As some comments show, it is still a steep learning curve for some and cybertroopers are always ready to create mischief but it is nevertheless ideal that the question was posed and elicited some mature and intelligent responses. – Dec 19, 2023

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