Ramasamy slams council of professors over defence of Zainal Kling

(FMT) – DAP’s P Ramasamy today hit out at the National Professors Council (MPN) following its defence of academic Zainal Kling over his comments at the recent Malay Dignity Congress, saying not much has changed since its reinstatement as a corporate entity.

“MPN might have changed its registration but it is still composed of key academics who held the fort under Barisan Nasional (BN),” Ramasamy, who is Penang deputy chief minister II, said in a statement.

“After all the controversy surrounding the role of MPN about its subservient role to the former BN government, there was an expectation that it might adopt a more critical role after becoming a corporate entity.”

Yesterday, MPN said Zainal’s comment on the concept of social contract at the congress on Oct 6 was “historically correct”.

It also said the concept was “indirectly implied” and not written directly in the Reid Commission Report 1957, which is an important part of the Federal Constitution.

It insisted that Zainal’s speech had not contained any inflammatory elements that could spark public unrest.

Ramasamy said while MPN might not have taken a critical stand on the matter of the congress, it was not expected to throw its “blind support” behind Zainal.

“MPN officials know very well that the nebulous ‘social contract’ was more a figment of Zainal’s imagination than anything else,” he added.

“For a person like Zainal, such fictitious thinking is nothing new. Years back, he even questioned whether Peninsular Malaysia was ever colonised by the British.”

Ramasamy said although MPN comprised nearly 1,500 professors from public universities, they had done nothing significant to uplift the academic standard of lecturers and professors over the past 12 years.

He added that its members appeared undemocratic and unchanged in their thoughts and actions.

“Do we really need a body like MPN? I am not sure. The question is whether MPN needs a new kind of leadership, leaders who are willing to take up the critical challenges facing the country and institutions of higher learning.”