By ILONA ANDREW
BEAUFORT: The State government will again disburse RM52 million worth of scholarships to assist talented Sabahans and retain human capital this year.
Political Secretary to the Finance Minister, Nic Chak, who gave this assurance here today said a similar amount in scholarships was disbursed last year.
According to Chak, state scholarships for Sabahans saw a 40 per cent increase in 2019 compared to the previous year, namely from RM37 million in 2018 to RM52 million.
He said the welfare of Sabahans would therefore continue to be taken care of regardless of religious affiliation and cultural background under the leadership of Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal.
He was representing Shafie to deliver 1,500 face masks to Beaufort Middle School.
“In 2018, the Warisan-led government fulfilled its election promise to give more attention to retaining and nurturing human talent and capital under the 2019 Sabah Budget.
“Thus, the Education and Innovations Ministry was set up to push for more autonomy,” he said to reporters.
Chak, who is a Warisan supreme council member, said the government would continue to protect the rights as well as recognise the contributions of all Sabahans.
Citing an example he said the initial RM12 million allocation for mission and private schools in 2018 under Barisan Nasional was increased by RM3 million in 2019.
“In 2020, it was again increased by RM3 million to RM18 million,” he revealed.
Apart from that, the aspirations and hopes of seeing the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) recognised was also realised in September 2019.
“Today, the UEC is recognised as an entrance qualification to higher learning institutions and the civil service in Sabah.
“This track record proves that the Sabah government recognises the contributions of the Chinese community to society,” he added.