MOHE Must Release Funds for Proper Maintenance & Upgrades of University Hostels & Fascilities

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Media Statement By Kelvin Yii:

DAPSY Malaysia urge the administration of University Utara Malaysia(UUM) and all relevant authorities  to expedite the necessary investigation into the sudden death of S. Visony, a 20-year-old accounting student who died in her dormitory at the Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) in Sintok, Kedah last Saturday.

A clear timeline must be given for the investigation to be done in spirit of transparency and a clear comprehensive plan must be done by the Ministry of Higher Education to address the concerns of safety and security of students and proper maintenance of university hostels and even fascilities

She was suspected to have suffered a fatal electric shock, something which the family claims is backed up by injuries on her body and the post-mortem findings.

This is a tragic accident that could have been avoided. This raise serious question of the safety of the student community not just in this particular campus but all campuses around the country especially when it comes to sub-standard safety maintenance of all university facilities.

Sadly, this is not an isolated case as there was also another incident that came just over a week after another dormitory accident occurred down at the Universiti Malaya campus in the Klang Valley. A fire broke out in a dorm room after UM’s management allegedly failed to fix a damaged fan that students had lodged a report on.

In 2015, the students of University Kebangsaan Malaysia( UKM) also complained of frequent water supply disruptions.  In 2021, a fire broke out in the UUM hostel, where the cause was suspected to be old electrical cables were damaged but not repaired. In April 2022, a 22 year old Universiti Sains Malaysia(USM) student died after falling and was suspected of climbing an old, unmaintained balcony while trying to take his clothes off the hanger.

All these points to a bigger issue on safety and maintenance in all students hostels and university facilities which has been neglected for so long. Based on many feedback from students, it is not a secret on how poorly many of such fascilities are maintained and many are just timebonbs and accidents waiting to happen.

That is why an independent audit and inspection must be done immediately on all hostels and university facilities across the country to identify those in urgent need of repairs and are of a safety hazard so that students can either be advised to avoid or even relocated to protect their safety.

I strongly urge the Ministry of Higher Education to immediately release the necessary allocations  as soon as possible and remove all unnecessary beaurecracy ensure the upgrades and maintainenance all facilities in university hostels and other facilities can be done as soon as possible to ensure such a tragic incident does not happen again.

A single death due to such avoidable circumstances is a death too many, and much more must be done to protect the welfare and safety of our students who are the future of our country.

Dr Kelvin Yii Lee Wuen
MP Bandar Kuching
DAPSY National Chief