Call on UM Vice Chancellor to withdraw the university’s police report and to stop targeting student activists for their protests but to address them

The University of Malaya Vice Chancellor Datuk Abdul Rahim Hashim should withdraw the University’s police report and stop targeting student activists for their protests but to address them.

The Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad has upheld the right of students to demonstrate, but disagree that a convocation ceremony was the right time and place to carry out the action. He further declared that the government had no intention of interfering in the matter.

It is in this spirit that the protest at the university’s graduation ceremony and other related matters should be addressed – not in a high-handed and vengeful light which would put the University of Malaya in more adverse light.

The Universiti Malaya Academic Staff Association (PKAUM), in its statement on the “unfortunate circumstance” in which engineering graduate Wong Ya Ke had protested at the university convocation and the “outright unfair targeting” of Edan Kon Hua En who was denied the right to attend his own convocation ceremony, has linked protests by student activists to existing dissatisfaction over various alleged “misacts” by the vice-chancellor Abdul Rahim Hasim.

"The protest itself is likely to be driven by an already unhappy student community due to the many misdemeanours and misactions of the UM vice-chancellor," the association secretary Noraishah Mydin Haji Abdul Aziz said in a statement.

PKAUM however stated that while it supported Wong’s right to express himself, it disagreed with Wong choice of platform as it marred the convocation ceremony for his fellow graduates and their families.

Abdul Rahim’s failure to promote racial tolerance and unity among the many diverse ethnic groups in UM by engaging in the organisation of the Malay Dignity Congress is a major blemish on his leadership of the university.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri