Education Minister Heng Swee Keat ‘tai-chi’ decision on NUS PRC scholar Sun Xu back to NUS
Posted by temasektimes on February 27, 2012
A final year student in Mechanical Engineering at the National University of Singapore, Sun sparked a near nationwide outcry among Singaporeans with his offensive remarks on there “being more dogs than humans in Singapore.” on his microblog ‘Weibo’ last Saturday, prompting many to call for his scholarship to be revoked.
Sun Xu is a recipient of the Ministry of Education’s ‘PRC undergraduate scholarship’ which sponsors his tertiary education in NUS for free on top of a generous monthly living allowance and a pair of to/fro tickets back to his hometown of Suzhou yearly.
MOE has earlier said its scholarship administrators will “take reference from findings of disciplinary proceedings by the National University of Singapore (NUS), where Mr Sun is studying, before recommending what action to take.”
However, Mr Heng now says NUS should investigate the matter and takes disciplinary action against Sun Xu if he was found to have flouted NUS’s code of conduct for its student in an interview with Lianhe Zaobao yesterday.
It is strange that MOE has adamantly refused to take a stance on the matter except saying that it is ‘disappointed’ with Sun Xu’s behavior. When two Singaporeans were caught kissing publicly in a junior college recently, they were expelled immediately by MOE.
Sun Xu will be attending a disciplinary hearing convened by NUS on 13 March where many expect that he will be given only a ‘slap on his wrist’.
With MOE giving NUS the last say on the matter, NUS will now become the prime target of public anger regardless of the punishment meted out.