SIBU: Students from the 14 independent Chinese schools can now apply for either scholarships or study loans from Yayasan Sarawak which previously were extended to students from government and mission schools only.
Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem received a thunderous round of applause from students of Wong Nai Siong Secondary School when he made the announcement yesterday.
The students had every reason to jump with joy as their United Examination Certificate (UEC), which is still not recognised by the Federal Government, is giving them problems in getting financial assistance for further studies.
“I, as the chairman of Yayasan Sarawak, welcome you to apply for scholarship or study loan with your UEC,” he said at a ceremony to present financial grant of RM4mil to the five independent Chinese Schools here.
On the UEC which the Sarawak United Association of Private Secondary School wanted the government to recognise, he said at this moment it could not do so as the internal conflict between two factions in the United Chinese School Committees Association (Dong Zong) was still on.
“Dong Zong must settle its problem first ... it is giving us a headache,” he added.
Adenan said the criteria set by the Education Ministry before it could give recognition of UEC was that students from this school needed to score a credit in Bahasa Malaysia.
On the financial grant of which RM3mil was given to them last year, he said the amount would be increased to RM5mil next year, provided he remained the chief minister.
“Not only that I will also look into the financial assistance needed by Chinese Primary Aided School,” he said.
Chairman of the Board of Management of Sarawak United Association of Private Secondary School Temenggong Vincent Lau when contacted said the extension of the Yayasan Sarawak scholarship or loan “is definitely good news for the students”.
With that he said students from this type of school could now enjoy the facility.
However, he said, the detail of the facility to them needed to be worked out at was its still sketchy at this moment.