Political appointees to board mere ‘blunder’, says Johor foundation

The board of the Johor Education Foundation is chaired by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian. — Picture by Ben Tan
The board of the Johor Education Foundation is chaired by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian. — Picture by Ben Tan

JOHOR BARU, Jan 14 — The appointment of the Johor Education Foundation’s (YPJ) board of directors is based on the respective members’ academic qualification and experience in education and corporate fields, the state body clarified today.

The foundation was also quick to point out that the list of board of directors on its website showing two Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) division leaders with their political posts was just a “blunder”.

“Political positions have never been a merit in YPJ's board of directors’ selection,” said a statement issued to the media through the Johor Mentri Besar’s office.

The board is chaired by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian, who is Johor PPBM secretary.

The two new appointees are Johor Baru PPBM division chief Zais Mohd Akil, and the party’s Tanjung Piai division chief Karmaine Sardini.

Photographs and posts of the YPJ’s board members were earlier shared on social media.

 

 

YPJ has since acknowledged the picture and posts of its two new directors that went viral on social media. The page has also been taken down and cannot be accessed by Malay Mail.

However, its statement defended the qualifications and experience of the two new board directors by listing Zais as the former student affairs principal assistant director at the Education Ministry in 2005 to 2008, as well as the former principal at Maktab Sultan Abu Bakar.

“He also served in the Johor Education Department as principal assistant director for 19 years,” said the statement.

The statement also listed Karmaine as a former teacher at SMK Teluk Kerang in Pontian before continuing his studies in architecture.

“He had served as an architect at the Kuala Lumpur City Hall from 1980 to 2000,” said the statement.

Earlier, Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin retweeted a picture of YPJ’s new board of directors, accusing them of shamelessly advertising their political posts.

 

 

Meanwhile, Johor Umno secretary Datuk Samsol Bari Jamali said that the blunder points towards the Johor Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration grabbing the “spoils of war” after the May 9 general election last year.

He pointed out that during Barisan Nasional’s rule, the administration had made sure that the political appointees within YPJ or any other Johor government linked companies were individuals of calibre.

“Basically being an Umno division chief does not qualify one to be appointed as a board of director to any government-linked agencies,” the Semarang assemblyman said when contacted on the issue by Malay Mail.

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