1st August 2021
What science is Health DG applying when he advises Parliament to postpone all select committee meetings for 2 weeks?
The Parliament Education Select Committee originally planned to meet on Tuesday, ie August 3 to discuss several issues, including:
(a) the latest status of 150,000 free laptops for students;
(b) home-based learning implemented by the Ministry of Education; and
(c) stress faced by higher education students due to online learning.
However, we received a letter by the secretary of Dewan Rakyat this afternoon, saying that upon the advice of the Health Director General, all meetings of Select Committee and Special Select Committee should be postponed for 2 weeks, to enable the Ministry of Health to assess risk following the recent COVID-19 cases detected in Parliament.
IDCC, where 204 workers tested positive for Covid-19, only closed for 1 day to enable sanitisation work to be carried out.
Parliament, where 11 people were tested positive out of 1,183, i.e. has a less than 1% positive rate – Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham needs 2 weeks to do his risk assessment.
The Education Select Committee consists of 7 members. Even after including parliamentary staffs and representatives from the Ministry, our meeting should not involve more than 30 people, and yet, Dr Noor Hisham advises us to postpone the meeting.
I am not a scientist by training, so I have to ask Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham this question: what science are you applying here?
It is your job to fight COVID-19 but please, it is also our job to fight for the students who are still waiting for their laptops to follow online classes, who are left out of education due to their inability to follow home-based learning, and who are facing tremendous mental stress due to this COVID-19 pandemic.
An Orang Asli student in Standard 6 doing lessons at home in Hulu Langat, Selangor during MCO 2.0 in January this year
So please tell us, why are we not even allowed to have meetings due to 0.9% of the positive rate? And why do you need 2 weeks to do your risk assessment while other places where COVID-19 cases are detected normally just need to close between 1 to 3 days?
Teo Nie Ching
MP for Kulai