2,000 Malaysian students in Egypt in financial distress
By Dinesh Kumar
December 09, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 9 — Some 2,000 students in Egypt are in dire need of financial aid after failing to get assistance from Putrajaya, several groups said today.
Persatuan Pengguna Islam Malaysia (PPIM) secretary general Dato’ Dr Ma’amor Osman said the students taking the medicine, dentistry and pharmacy course in Egyptian universities will be stranded if they do not receive any money soon.
“Some of these students are in urgent need of RM 30,000 by January 2011. If this amount cannot be channelled to them in time, they will be stranded in Egypt, unable to pay their university fees,” Ma’amor said in a press conference.
He said these students were originally financed by their families for the first year but were promised financial aid by the government from their second year onwards if they meet the requirements.
“But they didn’t receive anything. They did meet the requirements but they got nothing,” Ma’amor said.
Ma’amor said the PPIM together with Perkasa, the Malaysian Youth Council, Gabungan Pelajar Melayu Semenanjung (GPMS) and Majlis Perunding Melayu had set up the Emergency Education Fund to collect the RM 30, 000 by the end of this month to help the students in need.
“In the meantime, we also urge the GLCs to exercise their social responsibilities by contributing to the emergency fund,” Ma’amor said.
“We will set up a meeting with the Prime Minister. We believe only he can solve this problem. But if the PM himself cannot solve this, then we will bring this issue to the King,” he added.
Ma’amor said even if the government and the GLCs provide financial assistance to the students in Egypt, the “emergency fund will still be continued. It would become a ‘ready-to-use’ fund.”
The students who would receive the financial aid will have to sign a pledge declaring that they would return and serve their country.
The pledge would also require them to contribute to the emergency fund.
However, Ma’amor told The Malaysian Insider that “the pledge the students would sign is not legally binding. It all depends on the sincerity of their hearts. If they want to contribute, they should. But if they don’t want to, it’s up to them.”
Perkasa Youth chief Arman Azha Abu Hanifah expressed his sadness over the matter and also urged the GLCs to come forward and set up education funds.
“I am saddened that our own students are not receiving any help for their education. I humbly ask all the GLCs to set up their own education funds to help the students. They are our future doctors,” Arman said.
Ma’amor claimed that the government imports doctors, dentists and pharmacists from around the world and asked “why can’t the government spend the money on our own students and help them financially in the medical courses?”
The NGOs have set up a CIMB bank account and have urged all Malaysians to donate to the fund. Go here