Thursday, September 16, 2004

Pilihanraya kampus, Adham lawan Hamdan

Dipetik dari Malaysiakini

Kenyataan Adham Baba;

“Is Suhakam professional enough to monitor the polls? Are they well-equipped? Who are they going to send?”

Adham questioned the commission’s intention to monitor the current campus polls when it has never done so in the past.

“Will they persist in this kind of monitoring? (Or is it just) hangat-hangat tahi ayam (loss of initial enthusiasm)?” said Adham, who is also the Umno Youth education bureau chief.

He added that the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971 does not provide for any external body to monitor the campus elections.

“UUCA was enacted before the Suhakam was formed (in 1999). In the Act, we don’t have any provision to empower such monitoring and my opinion is that there is no need for this because the universities have the machinery required to conduct the elections,” he added.

He advised disgruntled students to forward their complaints to the university authorities rather than to Suhakam.

Adham reiterated that his ministry would leave the decision to the campus authorities, but it is learnt that Suhakam was still awaiting an official answer from both parties until yesterday evening.

Asked whether he would observe polling today, Adham replied: “I would not do the same thing as Suhakam because I have trust in the universities” and that “a few (election) irregularities complaints need not be highlighted in the media”.
Kenyataan Prof Hamdan Adnan;

In an immediate response to Adham’s comments, Suhakam commissioner Prof Hamdan Adnan argued that monitoring of campus elections is among the commission’s tasks.

“Why is there to fear by letting us in to monitor the polling process when the ministry keeps saying there is nothing to hide? By refusing our request, the perception is otherwise and it shows that there are a lot of things that they want to hide,” said Hamdan, who sounded furious.

“This fear culture among local universities is not good at all when we claim we want to produce world-class graduates.

“The question of Suhakam’s professionalism shouldn’t arise at all because the most important thing is the students’ right to fair elections. Unfair polling is a human rights violation and Suhakam is a statutory body set up to safeguard the country’s human rights.”

“I view these trends as worrying because I have been told that even parents had received threatening calls demanding that their children should withdraw from contesting,” said Hamdan.

He urged the universities to heed the advice of Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who has pledged to uphold good governance and transparency.

“If these pledges cannot be translated into the administration of one of our most important institutions - the university - then there must be something wrong. The prime minister will be
the laughing stock (of everyone) for not being able to implement his beautiful pledges,” he added.

Hmm, inilah Malaysia tanah airku.

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