Ongkili presenting a mock cheque to the representative of one of the 74 schools during a simple ceremony in Kota Marudu yesterday.
KOTA MARUDU: Education is a powerful tool for progress and poverty eradication, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili.
He said education is the key to success, which turns weaknesses into strengths.
“We should never use poverty as an excuse to not succeed in our studies. Studies show that those who grew from lower-income families have a high chance to transform their lives through proper education,” he said at the presentation of motivational funds to the Parent-Teacher Associations (PTAs) of Kota Marudu and Kudat in a ceremony held here yesterday.
Ongkili, who is also the Kota Marudu Member of Parliament, also encouraged schoolchildren to identify their talents and pursue their dreams.
He said the aid was meant to finance the PTAs programmes that would benefit their schoolchildren.
A total of RM80, 500 was distributed to 74 schools and a vocational college, of which 11 secondary schools, a religious secondary school and a vocational college in Kudat which received RM1,500 each, while RM1,000 each was given to 54 primary schools and seven religious primary schools.
Ongkili said in the last decade, the P168 Kota Marudu parliamentary office had spent some RM500,000 in financial assistance in various forms, such as donation of school items, pocket money for schoolchildren from the lower-income families, food support, school visits, motivational and study method classes, and support for private rural hostels.
“This assistance will continue to ensure our schoolchildren have a comfortable and conducive learning experience,” he said.
Assistant Community Development and People’s Wellbeing Minister and Matunggong Assemblywoman Datuk Julita Majungki, and Assistant Agriculture and Fisheries Minister and Tandek Assemblyman Hendrus Anding were also present.