KPT visitUUM ONLINE: The Ministry of Higher Education (KPT) is confident that university students will continue to persevere following the extension of the Movement Control Order (MCO) until 14 April, announced recently by the Prime Minister.

Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Dato' Dr. Mansor Othman said the country is in the first phase of the COVID-19 outbreak, forcing the extension of MCO to be implemented as a step in breaking the chain.

He expressed hope that students at UUM would also persevere until 14 April and that it was a new experience that the students must go through not alone but together with all Malaysians.

"To date, I have seen our students’ ability to withstand the challenges that come together with the implementation of the MCO when they chose to stay on campus and not return to their hometowns, and the university has also taken the proper steps to jointly address the COVID-19 issue because the issue is not just happening in the country, but worldwide.

"So I call upon all of them to continue to persevere as with the guidance, assistance and cooperation from the university," he said during his working visit to UUM recently.

During the visit, he visited the Central Pantry Food Bank, the Student Accommodation Centre (SAC) Multi-Purpose Hall that had been converted into a food storage facility and also the Proton Student Residential Hall (INASIS) where he distributed contributions and presented food aids to students.

At the same time, he thanked the UUM Management for providing the students with sufficient assistance throughout the duration of the MCO by taking care of their welfare including the students’ health and safety.

He also expressed hope that students and parents would be patient and not become anxious as the university was capable of handling the issue well, and that the interests of students on campus were well taken care of.

Meanwhile, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Dato' Dr. Ahmad Bashawir Abdul Ghani said the visit today was to observe the development and preparation carried out by UUM for students who were on campus and were not allowed to return to their respective hometowns.

In another development, the Vice-Chancellor also addressed the issue of Online Learning (OL), noting that there were students who may not have access to Internet access especially in rural areas.

"Give the University a little more time to make the right decision for the benefit of all. I implore to everyone that the University be given the space and ask that everyone to be patient because the university has not reached a decision to carry out Online Learning immediately or wait until the situation wanes.

"I would like to make sure that basic Internet access is also accessible to students at rural areas, so do not panic. The University management will make long-term and not short-term decisions that will be of disadvantaged to any parties," he said.