Dropped by Putrajaya, YTL says will keep 1BestariNet virtual learning platform running

YTL Communications CEO Wing K. Lee speaks to the press during the Pilot Project for Gigawire in George Town July 9, 2019. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
YTL Communications CEO Wing K. Lee speaks to the press during the Pilot Project for Gigawire in George Town July 9, 2019. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

GEORGE TOWN, July 9 — YTL Communications will continue providing students and teachers access to its 1BestariNet service despite the expiry of its contract with the Education Ministry on June 30.

YTL Communications chief executive officer Wing K. Lee said the company did not want to disrupt the virtual learning platform for students and teachers.

“We will continue to provide access to the learning platform,” he said.

The contract between YTL’s 1BestariNet and the Education Ministry to provide internet access and a virtual learning environment (VLE) to schools nationwide ended on June 30.

The company issued a statement on this issue yesterday to stress that it was hoping the government would hold an open tender to extend the existing internet and virtual learning services for schools. 

It said that it was not expecting the 1BestariNet contract to be extended without an open tender. 

Lee said the company clearly stated its position on the government’s decision to award the provision of internet services to schools to Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Celcom Axiata Berhad and Maxis Broadband without calling for an open tender.

The company said yesterday that it was supportive of the government’s initial decision to call for a new open tender for the contract as an open tender would allow for price transparency. 

“We won this project from an open tender previously and we look forward to the next opportunity to show what we can do,” he said.

YTL won the 1BestariNet contract in 2011 to provide internet services and a virtual learning platform to 10,000 schools in the country over a period of 15 years.

Last year, the Education Ministry announced that it would be calling for a fresh tender on the project by early this year. 

However, on June 27, the Education Ministry announced that Telekom Malaysia, Celcom Asiata and Maxis will be providing internet services to schools from July 1 until December 31 this year before choosing a new service provider for 2020.

It also confirmed that schools will be switching to Google Classroom as the VLE platform when phase two of the 1BestariNet service expires.

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