Aid awaits flood-damaged schools

Dr Mah (fourth right) paying a visit to SMJK Hwa Lian in Mentakab, Pahang, accompanied by Hiang (centre, blue shirt) and other school officials.

THE Education Ministry has submitted an application for emergency funds for schools that were badly affected by the recent floods, including SMJK Hwa Lian in Pahang, says Datuk Dr Mah Hang Soon.

The Deputy Education Minister said ministry officials had carried out thorough checks and verified the losses suffered by these schools.

“Funds are needed to carry out remedial and repair works so that the students can resume classes in a conducive environment.

“It is crucial to replace items like furniture and textbooks at the initial stage so the schools can resume operations as soon as possible,” he said after visiting SMJK Hwa Lian in Mentakab recently.

Among those who accompanied him were the school’s officials and its board of governors chairman Datuk Hiang A Li.

Dr Mah, who is also MCA deputy president, said efforts would be taken to expedite the distribution of funds through state education departments and district education offices once the approval has been granted by the Finance Ministry.

During the visit, he announced that RM100,000, from the community chest had been allocated to the school so that necessary repair works could be carried out.

He also lauded the organisations and volunteers from all over the country who rallied together to assist flood-hit schools.

“For schools that are not ready to resume operations, we will monitor the situation and render post-flood aid from time to time,” he said.

Recently, Education Minister Datuk Dr Radzi Jidin said a list of schools allowed to reopen for the third term of 2021/2022 following the recent floods would be announced every Wednesday.

He also said affected schools, parents and students would be informed accordingly.

Separately, Hiang said plans were in the pipeline to raise funds to repair the flood-hit school.

“We thank all voluntary bodies which helped to clean up the school compound for the reopening.

“The visit by Dr Mah is very much welcomed. It is a good encouragement for the teachers and students to start all over again.

“In addition, we have been getting sponsorship from many parties to restore the school facilities.

“The school board is planning to carry out the restoration as soon as possible,” he said.

The repairs and replacement of books and equipment will cost over RM2mil.

The school started with 110 students and five teachers back in 1958.

Currently, there are around 1,400 students and 100 teachers.

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