While the government is aware of the brain drain issue that has long plagued our economy, the government has not taken any effective measures to woo these talents back to contribute to the country.
Even more so, the lack of communication between government agencies has worsened this situation.
Recently, local journalist Hadi Azmi, who currently works for South China Morning Post, took to his Twitter page to share how his friend was sued for RM1 million over a scholarship and was forced to work in Singapore to repay his debt.
My friend got a scholarship to the US under JPA. Talentcorp approached him with a job in KL after graduating, so he returned.— Hadi Azmi (@amerhadiazmi) September 11, 2022
After a while, he got a letter from JPA suing him for 1m ringgit from his scholarship because he didn't 'report to them'. https://t.co/9M8BWdmb1I
According to Hadi, his friend was initially given a scholarship to the US by the Public Service Department (JPA). When he returned to the country to work, he was offered a job by TalentCorp Malaysia, another government agency that supports talent development in the country.
However, not long after he accepted the offer, his friend receives a letter from JPA, suing him for RM1mil for allegedly failing to “report to them”.
According to JPA, his friend was deemed as “absconding” from the scholarship due to an apparent communication breakdown between JPA and TalentCorp.
“He now works in Singapore because he needs the Singapore dollars to pay back that 1 million Ringgit,” Hadi said.
“He went up and down, knocking on doors to sort out this apparent bureaucratic mishap but to no avail. JPA slammed the door on his face, his wakil rakyat couldn’t help him.”
To make things worse, his friend was told that if he misses even one payment, they will go for his guarantor for the outstanding, which is his retired father.
Hadi then lamented the fact that his friend had to suffer such treatment by the government for coming back to serve the nation, while those who chose to stay in the US did not suffer the same fate.
“We talk so much about brain drain but we punish those who chose to come back, over simple bureaucratic paperwork that someone could fix with a signature,” he said.
Hadi said that while his friend may have acted on bad counsel, he should not have been penalised for choosing to return to Malaysia to work.
“Some are suggesting that it was his fault, sure, he acted on bad advice by TalentCorp. But he came to JPA with proof that he has been back and working in Malaysia since graduating and they still refused to entertain his plea. That’s the whole being punished part,” Hadi said.
What do you think about this? Share your thoughts!