PETALING JAYA: Amanah has questioned the rationale for sponsoring the £10 million (RM52 million) Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies (OCIS) building in the UK while slashing funding for local universities.
Malaysiakini said this amount was on top of a RM12 million sponsorship by Malaysia for the construction and interior decoration for OCIS’ auditorium.
The news portal said the sponsorship was announced by Malaysian High Commissioner to the UK Ahmad Rasidi Hazizi in conjunction with Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s visit to OCIS to deliver a keynote speech.
Mahasiswa Amanah’s head Ahmad Fadhli Umar Aminolhuda said under the Budget there had been big cuts of 20-40 per cent in allocations for Universiti Malaya, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
The operational expenditure for local universities was slashed by 19.32 per cent, or RM1.456 billion.
He questioned why the government was more keen in funding the interior design of a foreign university and whether there would be a marked increase in the intake of Malaysian students by OCIS.