Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Cops quiz exco on 'abuse' of Tamil school funds - Malaysiakini

The police today recorded the statement of Selangor exco Xavier Jayakumar at his office in Shah Alam with regards to a police report lodged against him.

The report, filed with the Klang district police headquarters, concerned the alleged 'abuse' of RM1.67 million in allocations for Tamil schools last year.

After lodging the report, Klang's Parents Teachers Association chairperson G Jeganathan said the state government had given the funds, meant for upgrading the schools, to three NGOs without a clear explanation.

The three NGOs are Child Information, Learning and Development Centre (Child), Tamil Foundation Malaysia and Educational, Welfare and Research Foundation.

xavier jayakumar pc 190110 01Speaking to reporters after the police left, Jayakumar did not rule out the possibility that the episode could be politically motivated.

"I don't know from what angle this is coming (from) and who is behind this report. I'm sure its not Jeganathan, he doesn't seem to know anything, he doesn't seem to know the issues," he said.

Jayakumar explained that the funds provided to the NGOs were part of a programme by the Selangor government to improve Tamil education

"We took six months to study the proposal from them (the NGOs). We had multiple meetings. The state will have a five-year programme in order to increase the standard of Tamil school education," he added.

Continuous effort needed

Furthermore, he said that it is the prerogative of the state government on how to allocate the funds.

He said that a total of RM4 million was allocated to Tamil schools last year and of this amount, RM1.58 million was given as an "outright grant" to the three NGOs.

He pointed out that the Parents Teachers Association changes every year and therefore the programmes that are carried out would also vary.

"If you don't have a concerted effort of putting a continuos programme over five years, you cannot get results.

"That is why we are working with NGOs who are experts in this, who have hands on experience and they know exactly how the ground works," he said.

Following the allegation, Jayakumar has published on his blog a list of tables detailing how the state's allocations were spent for Tamil schools last year.