Unemployment among UBD graduates raised in LegCo

National 1 minute, 55 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

A STATE Legislative Council (LegCo) member yesterday raised concerns regarding graduates from Universiti Brunei Darussalam who hold degrees in Malay medium courses, Bahasa Melayu (Malay language) and Sastera Pendidikan (literature education), who are still unemployed.

Hj Bakar Mansor directed his questions to the Minister of Education who responded that this is a problem which occurs every year as there are no teaching positions available in the respective fields.

"It is not sustainable for us to offer 300-400 positions without taking into account the real demand of the ministry," said Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Lela Dato Seri Setia Hj Abd Rahman Dato Setia Hj Mohamed Taib. He brought the council's attention to a previous discussion which called for each ministry to conduct their own "manpower audit".

The minister also pointed out that there are vacancies for teaching positions at private schools which are usually filled by expatriate teachers.

"Our graduates are still hoping for jobs in the government, that is the problem we are facing," Pehin Dato Hj Abd Rahman said.

Hj Bakar also brought up issues on the supply of workbooks for students which can only be found at approved bookstores across the country.

According to him, the shops usually run out of stock, affecting students' learning process as they have to wait a couple of months for new stock to arrive.

The minister assured that the ministry will look into the matter to ensure that the problem is not repeated.

Orang Kaya Jaya Putera Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Taha Abd Rauf said he received complaints from lower income parents that the prices of the books were costly. "Perhaps the ministry can reduce the quality of the workbooks as it is only used once?" he suggested.

The minister replied that assumptions have been made on the price range which the ministry will improve by the end of the year.

Meanwhile, LegCo member Hj Shafiee Ahmad enquired about the differences in payment between Malay, English and Mathematics teachers.

"Malay teachers (upon employment) receive allowances (as payment). English and Maths teachers receive daily wages. Why is there a difference?"

The minister replied that it is up to the Department of Schools to follow the regulations that have already been set.

The Brunei Times