Review university decisions to stay out of rankings, Kit Siang tells govt

DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has urged the government to review decisions made by Universiti Malaya and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia to stay out of a popular Times Higher Education university ranking study. — Picture by Choo Choy May
DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has urged the government to review decisions made by Universiti Malaya and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia to stay out of a popular Times Higher Education university ranking study. — Picture by Choo Choy May

Kuala Lumpur, Oct 4 — DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has urged the government to review decisions made by Universiti Malaya and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia to stay out of a popular university ranking study.

Like much of Asia, university rankings are followed closely in Malaysia and a decent spot in a long list of global universities is both coveted and a point of national pride.

But even Malaysia’s best universities have fared poorly in rankings over recent years and that has been seen as markers of declining standards. The inevitable comparisons with neighbouring high achievers have also worsened perceptions.

“No good reason has been given as to why UM and UKM have refused to participate in the annual THE (Times Higher Education) World University Rankings exercise,” Lim said in a statement, which also demanded intervention from Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

“Unless there can be good and proper reasons, which should be fully made public, Muhyiddin should ensure that UM and UKM participate in the annual THE Top 400 World University Rankings,” he added.

Lim argued that participating in ranking surveys is necessary to demonstrate seriousness in wanting to restore the international reputation and academic excellence of Malaysian universities.

He also slammed the government’s silence on the latest rankings.

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