All university outdoor activities postponed, pending internal inquiry, says ministry

KUALA LUMPUR, May 16 — The Ministry of Higher Education today ordered the immediate postponement of all outdoor activities of institutions of higher learning in the country in the wake of the deaths of two students hit by a falling tree.

Deputy Minister Datuk Dr Mary Yap Kain Ching said the measure was taken following the deaths of two students of the Puncak Alam campus of Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) during a training stint at the Lata Charok waterfall in Janda Baik, Bentong, Pahang, three days ago.

Six other students were injured in the accident.

Yap said the ministry took a serious view of the accident and would conduct an internal inquiry as well as evaluate the standard operating procedure for outdoor activities.

“An investigation will be done. I will not comment on the SOP until I have a report on the probe. I cannot comment on how long it will take. You have to give us some time. I was definitely devastated when I got the news,” she said to reporters after visiting injured student Muhammad Haziq Radzuan at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital here.

Yap said the ministry had also instructed UiTM to take immediate steps to counsel and assist the affected students.

“UiTM will also have discussions with the relevant authorities such as the Department of Forestry and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment on the incident,” she said.

Meanwhile, Dr Paul Vijayandran of the Department of Neurosurgery at HKL said Muhammad Haziq had undergone rehabilitation well and did not face any post-surgery complications.

“He has regained consciousness and we will allow him to leave for home in a day or two,” he said. — Bernama

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