KUCHING, Sept 23 — Parti Pesaka Bumiputera (PBB) must find ways to get more Bumiputera students interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects in schools, its president Tan Sri Abang Johari Openg said here today.
The premier said it is only through technical education that talent development can be upgraded and income of the people can be improved.
“The problem now is that not many of Bumiputera students are taking up the STEM subjects,” Abang Johari said at the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera’s (PBB) southern zone special convention held in conjunction with the 60 years of Sarawak Independence this year.
He said there is no point talking about carbon capture or green or hydrogen energy if the people themselves lack the knowledge on physics, biology, engineering and mathematics subjects.
“This is where the bumiputeras are weak and how do we want to solve the problem,” he said.
“The problem lies not with the state government, but with the present federal government’s policy,” he said, adding that only science schools in Sarawak are equipped with laboratories while the rest are not.
He noted that in the past, while he was a student, all schools were equipped with laboratories that they used when they were having biology or chemistry classes.
Abang Johari said the lack of labs in schools could be one of the reasons for Bumiputera students were weak or not interested in STEM subjects.
He said it is for this reason that the state government is using its own ways to see that all schools in Sarawak are equipped with laboratories.
Abang Johari also said PBB members must possess the fighting spirit based on facts and rights enshrined in the Federal Constitution, Malaysia Agreement 1963, Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC) Report 1962 and Cobbold Commission.
“It is not because we are parochial, but rather we are guided by these documents, not less not more,” he said.
He said PBB leadership must struggle based on the existing facts.