Totalitarianism does not work!

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Recently the Dean of a local university has called on the Government to impose restrictions on new graduates in order to prevent them from leaving to serve especially in Singapore. He believes that these graduates should be forced into completing the compulsory service, which by the way, is now 2 years excluding a 2 year housemanship period.

Totalitarian techniques will never work in the long-run. Instead it will drive precious human resource away from the country. Instead, the government should look into ways of making positions in Malaysia more attractive. Sometimes, it is not all about money. New graduates look for opportunities to advance their careers. Certainly, the prestige of universities in Singapore and the irresistible offer from scouts make Singapore so attractive that only fools will refuse!

Malaysia is not helping herself either, from poor human resource management to shifting policies, new graduates find the bureaucracy too much to handle. As much as Malaysia attempts to attract foreign investments into this country, we will need to do the same for the medical profession. Procedures and policies within the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Higher Education need to be more transparent.

Malaysia needs to focus on those within the country. There has been substantial amount of money poured into getting experts from overseas back to Malaysia, to no avail. Unfortunately, in the Government’s haste to attract foreign talents, local ones are neglected as many opt either to go private or to emigrate to other countries. They should realise that when they care for those already within Malaysia, it will indirectly attract foreign Malaysians back to our shores.

Universities within Malaysia needs to be strengthened. The academia of many public universities continue to see efflux of talents. The carbon copy of key performance indexes for all academic staff is foolish. They should realise that individuals differ in their strengths and interests. It is about supporting these individuals in their academic endeavour, NOT to measure them based on one’s perception of success.

There is much work to be done. Sadly when a top academician makes such an ill researched remark to the press, it drives many whom may still be in the decision process, away from Malaysia and into the arms of lucrative Singapore!

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