Education ministry suspends new PTPTN repayment scheme

The repayment scheme will be suspended until collective inputs and feedback from all stakeholders is received says Maszlee Malik.

PETALING JAYA: The education ministry has suspended a new repayment scheme for the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) borrowers, a day after it was announced.

“The ICLR PTPTN repayment scheme will be suspended for the time being until we receive collective inputs and feedback from all stakeholders,” Education Minister Maszlee Malik, announced on Twitter today, referring to the Income Contingent Loan Repayment (ICLR).

Yesterday, PTPTN chairman Wan Saiful Wan Jan said borrowers earning less than RM2,000 a month will be exempted from repaying their student loans.

Under the new mechanism, known as scheduled salary deductions (PGB), borrowers earning RM2,000 and above will have between 2% and 15% of their salaries deducted to repay their student loans.

The new scheme, however, did not sit well with the borrowers who flooded the fund’s Facebook page with complaints and pleas for reconsideration, saying the new repayment mechanism is unfair and a breach of their existing contracts.

Maszlee’s announcement came hours after Wan Saiful said he was ready to listen to the grouses of borrowers.

Wan Saiful also said the loans must be repaid as borrowers had agreed to this when they signed the contract, but he was prepared to consider the pleas of those in need of “special consideration”.

He defended PTPTN’s move to get borrowers to pay up as it was meant to benefit new students who would need help to finance their studies.