All quarters ought to stop issuing press statements about the matriculation programme’s racial quota, and respect the cabinet’s decision on it, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mujahid Yusof Rawa.
Cabinet had earlier agreed to increase this year’s matriculation intake by 60 percent to 40,000 spots, while maintaining the 90:10 quota for bumiputera and non-bumiputera students respectively.
This, Mujahid said, was in line with the original intent of the matriculation programme - to encourage more bumiputera students to enrol in science courses at university.
“The statement by (Education Minister) Maszlee Malik about the matriculation quota was merely in defence of the cabinet’s decision.
“[...] I hope all parties will stop issuing statements about the matriculation quota issue out of respect for the cabinet’s decision,” the de facto religious affairs minister said in a statement today.
Mujahid, thus, said that he was in “full support” of Maszlee.
Maszlee (photo) has come under intense fire for both his statement announcing the cabinet’s decision on the matriculation quota, as well as his attempts at explaining it.
At a dialogue in a public university last week, the Bersatu politician had answered a question about the quota by linking the issue to how job applicants were being discriminated for not knowing Mandarin.
Maszlee further defended the need for the quota by saying that non-bumiputera dominated private tertiary education because they were generally more well-off.
The polarising debate has prompted calls for issues like matriculation to be addressed based on socio-economic class categories, rather than race alone.