October 31st, 2014

Berita Jenayah ~ Yang di katakan penjenayah 'comei' gok orrkk

Muhdalena lari dari hospital

Muhdalena Ahmad
Sumber: Berita Harian Jenayah 29/10/2014

Jenayah 1. JOHOR BAHRU: Wanita yang pernah didakwa terbabit dengan kejadian amuk di Kompleks B Jabatan Perdana Menteri (JPM), Muhdalena Ahmad, 30, dipercayai melarikan diri dari Hospital Sultanah Aminah (HSA) di sini, pagi tadi.

Muhdalena yang diperintahkan ditahan di Hospital Permai, Tampoi, di sini oleh Mahkamah Sesyen Putrajaya, Jun lalu itu dikatakan dimasukkan ke HSA kerana bersalin kelmarin.

Bagaimanapun, Muhdalena didapati tiada di katil hospital berkenaan kira-kira jam 9 pagi tadi selepas dikatakan memberi alasan untuk keluar ke tandas.

Sebelum ini, Mahkamah Sesyen Putrajaya melepaskan Muhdalena daripada empat pertuduhan dalam satu kejadian amuk dua tahun lalu. Mahkamah mendapati tertuduh mengalami ketidaksempurnaan akal semasa kejadian dan memerintahkannya ditahan dengan selamat di Hospital Permai Tampoi sementara menunggu diperkenan Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Muhdalena yang juga bekas penuntut Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia (UIAM) menghadapi empat pertuduhan berhubung kejadian amuk bersama seorang lelaki di Kompleks B, JPM, Presint 1 di Putrajaya, pada jam 2.30 petang, 9 Julai 2012.

Jenayah 2. SEPANG: Seorang wanita didakwa di Mahkamah Sesyen di sini, hari ini atas tuduhan memberi sokongan kepada kumpulan militan Negara Islam (IS) pada 5 Oktober lalu.

Wanita didakwa beri sokongan kepada militan IS

UMMI Kalsom Bahak, 25, (kanan) dibawa keluar dari Mahkamah Sesyen Sepang hari ini selepas didakwa atas tuduhan memberi sokongan kepada kumpulan militan Negara Islam (IS) pada 5 Oktober lalu. - Foto Mohd Fadli Hamzah
Sumber: Berita Harian Jenayah 31/10/2014

Ummi Kalsom Bahak, 25, dia didakwa mengikut Seksyen 130J (1)(a) Kanun Keseksaan dibaca bersama Seksyen 511 Kanun yang sama dan boleh dihukum di bawah Seksyen 130J kanun yang sama.

Pendakwaan dikendalikan Timbalan Pendakwa Raya, Wan Shahruddin Wan Ladin dan tiada sebarang pengakuan direkodkan daripada tertuduh.

Hakim Aizatul Akmal Maharani menetapkan 20 November ini untuk sebutan semula kes.

Innovation and the 11MP

BEGINNING 2016, we will roll out the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP). This is the last five-year plan before we hit 2020, the climax year of our much proclaimed destiny to be a fully developed nation.

The 11MP should, however, be designed to prepare the nation beyond 2020. We must remember that as a fully developed nation, we enter a new era of competition with the other developed countries of the world, not the league of the less-developed nations which compete on low costs. We have to beat them to have a decent share of the global economy.

Increasingly, a key factor of competition is innovation. Countries which are good at harnessing innovation tend to stay ahead. We have to do the same. It is encouraging to notice that the country’s leaders have been sending a strong message on innovation in recent years. The prime minister has been especially vocal in persuading the nation to take the path of innovation seriously. Innovation was, in fact, mentioned a number of times in his recent 2015 Budget speech. He has personally launched various programmes to spur innovation in the country. This is a good sign.

There is the “MaGIC” programme anchored by the Ministry of Finance to invigorate innovation among young entrepreneurs. Another programme is “PlaTCOM ventures”, a joint innovation platform anchored by the Malaysian Innovation Agency (AIM) and SME Corp to facilitate research and development (R&D) commercialisation for SMEs.

The Steinbeis model of technology brokering from Germany is another recent innovation enabling initiative anchored by AIM. And in the 2015 Budget, the prime minister also alluded to a Standards and Industrial Research Institute of Malaysia (SIRIM) rebranding exercise to help boost SME involvement in R&D.

Innovation and the 11MP - STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar Abdullah, the secretary-general of the Treasury and chairman of the Malaysian Global Innovation and Creative Centre (MaGIC), speaking to founders of start-ups and students at a seminar in Putrajaya

The Science To Action (S2A) programme anchored by the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT) is also worth watching. It adopts a three-pronged attack to raise the nation’s innovation prowess; science for governance, science for wellbeing and science for industry. Admittedly, our science governance is in need for constructive tweaking if we are to truly deliver societal and economic wellbeing. It cannot be business as usual.

Arguably, the command of science is an important prerequisite of innovation success. This is also why the government is also giving serious emphasis to STEM education. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. The PM launched a global initiative on STEM at the recent meeting of the Global Science and Innovation Advisory Council, GSIAC, in New York.

This is to address the declining interest in science among our students. The initiation of all such programmes is a clear signal from the government that it is taking the innovation agenda seriously. The challenge before us now is how all such programmes can be better coordinated and monitored in terms of progress.

In the past, one serious weakness of our science and innovation programmes has been the failure to effectively coordinate and monitor. As a result, we did not get the necessary feedback to further improve the programmes or policy.

This is where many among the scientific fraternity are suggesting to include a dedicated chapter on innovation in the soon-to-be crafted 11MP. The chapter must clearly articulate the governance framework, the institutional responsibilities and the implementation blueprint on innovation.

This is where the recently established National Science and Technology Innovation Council (NSTIC) would be the right institution to provide the oversight over all the programmes.

The fact that NSTIC will also be chaired by the prime minister makes it even more relevant. But NSTIC needs an effective secretariat. Many have suggested the National Science and Research Council (NSRC) to be the secretariat for NSTIC. Chaired by the Science Advisor, NSRC has the clout for that role.

But there is a strong suggestion that it should be strongly supported by an efficient data agency. This is where the Malaysian Science and Technology Information Centre, MASTIC, should be brought under the umbrella of NSRC.

More importantly, it must be empowered with the necessary resources to collect the relevant data to support innovation. In fact, this would jive very well with the recent calling by the government to pay more attention to data analysis. The 11MP is the right platform to spell all this out. DR AHMAD IBRAHIM NST Columnist 29 OCTOBER 2014 @ 8:15 AM

The scholar teacher culture

WORLDWIDE, international organisations, universities and professional organisations organise conferences on themes such as; “The Future of Schools and Universities” or “The Future of Learning”.

This week in Bangkok, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) and the Asia Pacific Programme of Educational Innovation for Development organised its 17th International Conference on the theme: “Teachers for the Future We Want”.

All these brainstorming, rigorous analysis, international agenda and national mission come in the wake of the ending of the Millennium Development Goals and Education for All initiatives next year, and the ideation and new global initiatives being formulated.

Unesco’s director (Bangkok), Gwang Jo-Kim states: “This year on Oct 5 is the 20th anniversary of World Teachers Day, and its core message is: an education system is only as good as its teachers who take centre stage in shaping the minds and attitudes of the coming generations to deal with new global challenges and opportunities.

“When governments and communities invest in teachers, they are essentially investing in the future.”

Before teachers can influence generations of students and shape the future, they have to shape themselves.

One strategic initiative in elevating the profession and creating changes is for teachers to rediscover their noble ancestry and realise truly that they are really scholars, intellectuals, leaders of communities, knowledge entrepreneurs and change masters.

The concept of scholar teacher is regaining relevance among educators worldwide especially as society becomes more advanced and the profession is respected as a “true profession” with the intangible reality of knowledge power, civilisational mission, self-respect, elegant thinking processes, social skills and relationships, virtues, intellectual character, relevant competencies and self-confidence.

The scholar teacher culture

Before teachers can influence generations of students and shape the future, they have to shape themselves

The concept of scholar teacher has many implications. One of its major implications would be that teachers will no more be at the periphery of society and development.

The scholar teacher will be actively engaged in the defining of reality and development. The scholar teacher will no longer allow others to hijack the profession and define the contents, standards, meaning and spirit of the profession and dictate what teachers should do.

The scholar teacher will be the shapers of society and the future that they anticipate and the future the society they lead want.

The roots of the notion of scholar teacher are also from the notion of scholar civil servant since China’s Sui Dynasty (581-617) when civil servants passed a series of examinations based on the mastery of Confucian books.

The scholar civil servants were also masters of poetry, calligraphy, painting and bold critics of society and of those who abused power. The roots of the notion of the scholar teacher are embedded in the examples of Socrates and Ibn Khaldun considered as the founding fathers of Liberal Arts.

It will be scholar teachers who define responsible membership of communities, participative national citizenry and contributions to global citizenship. Scholar teachers understand the meaning of the possibility of creating an enlightened citizenry as they understand the nature of developing students’ potentialities.

Also in comprehensive, realistic and holistic terms they can understand how the development of the potentialities, talents and other competencies of students translate to the making of a knowledge society, an enlightened, engaged and responsible citizenry.

The scholar teacher is humble and respectful of the clarity and power of the mind of ancient scholars and their robust and significant contributions and lofty ideals.

In keeping with developments in the field, the programme standards in education will unleash debates regarding the deeper and more profound philosophy of education, the philosophy of teacher education and of the contents and processes of learning considered worthwhile for learners today who will live in an unknown tomorrow with all kinds of uncertainties.

In an important work on “Scholarship Reconsidered,” Ernest Boyer argued that the “teacher scholar” will engage in discovery, integration of all knowledge, the application of knowledge to real situation and the systematic and transparent and public examination of his/her teaching-learning.

The scholar teachers for the future will bring about strategic changes to the profession and the way it contributes, and, to the development of society. It will mean changes in the mindset and self-definitions of teachers and paradigm shifts of teacher education.

In its realistic idealism, it will create a bold new knowledge society quietly, unobtrusively, enabling its members to be in fulfilment of higher ideals of existence. The growth of scholar teachers as lifelong, life wide and perennial learners, will lead to the eventual closing of the gaps of knowledge, and thinking among teachers at all levels, and, among the citizenry. . DATUK DR IBRAHIM AHMAD BAJUNID NST Columnist  31 OCTOBER 2014 @ 8:07 AM

Tougher MUET requirementa bitter medicine

IN 2011, about 55 per cent of the Malaysian University English Test (MUET) candidates achieved Bands 1 and 2. These bands respectively translate to very limited and limited proficiency in English. Only two years later, the number has risen to 70 per cent. It is hardly surprising, really, given that a similar proportion of English teachers in our schools are incapable of teaching the language.

The painful truth to be told, if students have a limited ability to use and understand English even after eleven years of learning the language, perhaps they should not be admitted into the ivory tower in the first place.

Universiti Teknologi Petronas graduates waiting to receive their scrolls at the convocation recently. If we are serious about moving away from a low-wage economy, moving up the value chain and competing for foreign investments, we can no longer live in cosyland and pretend we can still go global without English.

Perhaps that was the reason for the relatively muted resistance against a tougher MUET requirement for public universities, proposed during the Budget tabling earlier this month.

Public approval is good news. The bad news is it confirms a common knowledge of a critically declining English proficiency among our graduates.

Among the few concerns raised, reservations by the public against the new ruling centres on two main premises.

First, that the new policy would lead to a lower number of graduates in the country, and would ultimately defeat our aim of having more Malaysians with a tertiary degree. Rural students, in particular, would be put at a disadvantage.

In the short run, there may be some truth to this. But the world is not static. Stakeholders are responsive social actors. Students, parents and teachers may finally be serious about stepping up on English proficiency. That includes no more pressing the I-II button on the TV remote control. The government has also recognised current shortfalls and is intensifying efforts to improve proficiency, not just among students, but more crucially, among the teachers.

This includes the quality of English teaching in rural schools. In fact, the hoo-hah about rural children being denied the opportunity for higher education if the new requirement is pushed through, not only ignores the bigger picture, it is akin to taking them hostage in return for inaction. As the statistics have shown, it is no longer a question of rural-urban divide.

More importantly, if we are serious about moving away from being a low-wage economy, moving up the value chain and competing for foreign investments, we can no longer live in cosyland and pretend we can still go global without English.

Apart from the low-wage advantage, Philippines and India are the preferred choice of business outsourcing destination mainly because of the workforce’s high proficiency in English.

Innovative products will be hard to implement and sell if we still stutter during marketing presentations. Similar can be said of the sales of sophisticated and technical products, which have a limited local market.

In short, we should give graduates no false hope. The painful truth to be told, if students have a limited ability to use and understand English even after eleven years of learning the language, perhaps they should not be admitted into the ivory tower in the first place.

On the brighter side, maybe the economy doesn’t need as many degree holders as we think it does.

Kenneth Gray and Sang Hoon Bae argued, in their book Skills Shortages, Over-Education and Unemployed Youth: An International Dilemma, that there is a global surplus in university-educated engineers but a critical shortage of technicians. In other words, more graduates with diploma and advanced diploma are needed.

The upside from this new ruling may well be a growing public acceptance towards the other pathway to success — the vocational path — where English proficiency is not a must, yet it can equally offer a high future payoff.

The second but no less significant argument is the position of English vis-a-vis the national language. Many have argued that the national language should be given precedence over English, and therefore slammed those with poor command of the national language. They have thus called for an equally tough, if not tougher, requirement for Bahasa Malaysia.

This is a delicate problem. Indeed, the development of both English and the national language must go hand-in-hand. But the lack of proficiency in the national language among citizens takes place largely beyond the public university sphere.

General admission requirements in public universities should have already filtered out applicants without a credit in Bahasa at the SPM-level. The sensitivity of the issue notwithstanding, it is still imperative to address.

As it stands, most public universities have already imposed tough entry requirements in fields such as law and medicine.

For example, a MUET Band 4 is generally required for admission into law faculties and so will not be greatly affected by the new rule. Most medical programmes, while require a minimum of Band 3 at present, are extremely competitive, so little headwind is expected in requiring a notch higher either.

The same, however, cannot be said of entry requirement into other programmes. Currently, requiring a minimum of Band 1 means that candidates need to do no more than to sit for the exams, effectively making the process meaningless. Here is where the new rule will add significant value. MAZLENA MAZLAN NST Columnist 31 OCTOBER 2014 @ 8:09 AM