It's absolutely disturbing to read that the Public Service Department (PSD) is keen to undertake bankruptcy or imprisonment steps against those who break their bonds (NSTJune 9th).
This is certainly no wise move for it will seriously undermine, hamper and halt the current move to invest in human capital.
These drastic measures, while may bear fruit, could be counter-productive and is not an intelligent way of handling a problem.
Such actions will destroy the very future of the student and he may become a problem to our civil society giving rise to other associated issues.
While the future of this country rest in the hands of strong and robust students we must never be principally responsible for employing destructive and penal measures.
It is therefore imperative in the given circumstances to shape clear and practicable measures to overcome the problem of non-payment.
Perhaps aggressive steps are necessary to revamp the current selection process for it is not all to clear.
Then there is a need to educate the recipients on the social commitment and duty to repay on completion of their studies or upon gaining suitable employment.
While such recipient and scholars can read, write and pass examinations but they may not be scholars enough to realise their social obligations.
Perhaps it is the fault and failure of the establishment in not properly educating them on the future needs.
It is undoubtedly true that the awards of such scholarships are not on demand but a privilege of the state which must be exercised on very clear terms and guidelines which are currently absent and/or undisclosed.
We Malaysians belong to a tame generation and must refrain from taking wild and terrifying steps that may surprise the scholars.
We must act prudent. As a developing nation the skills of persuasion not intimidation and coercion should be practised.
The right to education remains a natural one and one should not be discriminated on the grounds of race and religion.
The objective of education must not be clouded or defeated by racism. We must always remember to maintain an open mind receptive to credible ideas and ideals.
Ultimately we must learn from our own past mistakes. We cannot afford to march on the path of destruction.
To maintain our regional and global competitive edge we must possess humanitarian values in the award of scholarships and ensure that the very best candidates are selected so as to avert a brain drain in future.
If we continue to undertake penal actions we must be prepared to face serious repercussions.