A three-day motivational programme was organised at Pusat Kecemerlangan Pendidikan Orang Asli, Simpang Pulai, for aspiring Orang Asli students who will be sitting for their public exams later this year.
The programme, dubbed “Zero G”, and running for the fifth consecutive year, is an ambitious effort to raise the academic excellence of Orang Asli children. G stands for “gagal” in the Malay language, which means “failure”.
This year’s “Zero G” programme received some 350 participants, from 13 primary and seven secondary schools. It was organised by Yayasan Orang Asli Perak (YOAP) and sponsored by Yayasan Sultan Azlan Shah (YSAS). Foundation trustee, former Armed Forces Chief, Gen Tan Sri Mohd Zahidi bin Hj Zainuddin (R) launched the programme.
In his opening address, YOAP Chairman Dato’ Suki Mee, said that through education, indigenous people can better themselves, their family and the community. They will no longer be marginalised. However, he cautioned that the quest for academic excellence must not be at the expense of their tradition and culture.
A mock cheque for RM190, 000 was handed over by Tan Sri Mohd Zaidi to Dato’ Zuki Mee as sponsorship for the programme. The Orang Asli foundation will disburse financial aid to all the schools involved. Meanwhile, twelve students received cash incentives for their sterling performance in last year’s public exams.