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PENGKALAN CHEPA, 22 APRIL: In the wake of the demands of local students waiting for the opportunity to return to their families, it is different from the international students of Universiti Malaysia Kelantan. They decided to stay here. Following the COVID-19 outbreak, the Malaysian government has issued a Movement Control Order (MCO) which is now entering its third phase since its enforcement since 18 March. The MCO has prevented nearly 80,000 students from various public universities across the country from returning home. The MCO is implemented as one of the measures to curb the spread of the pandemic.

Sanjay Kumar, a UMK doctoral (PhD) student from India and now at Jeli Campus, said he had no problem with the MCO being enforced by the Malaysian government at this time. The opportunity was used by him and other colleagues to focus on their respective research papers.

"My focus is now on my academic studies. I miss my family but we all know the pandemic is everywhere. So what's the difference between staying here or returning to India?" he said.

This view of Sanjay was agreed upon by his other friends.
He said most of them had no problem with the MCO being enforced by the Malaysian government at the moment to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic globally.

According to him, the UMK international student group remains strong and positive. They fully understand and support the orders from the Malaysian Government and the methods social distancing during these difficult times as this is the best way to weaken COVID-19.

Sanjay added that he, along with his fellow PhD students such as Abdul Halim Sheikh of Bangladesh and Ferid Abdulhafiz Kemal from Ethiopia, expressed appreciation and gratitude for the assistance provided by the Student Affairs Office and Alumni who provided nutritious food such as bread, energy drinks , fruits, water and daily food throughout the MCO period.

Meanwhile, Samsidine Aidara from Senegal who rented a house near the Jeli Campus UMK said as a part-time language learner and teacher at UMK, he also utilised the Teaching and Learning (T&L) method online throughout the MCO period while at home.

He said during that time he also used online meetings through video conferencing to keep in touch with colleagues and students.

“Yes, the MCO is not a 'honeymoon period' and do not take the advantage because of the MCO. However, for almost a month there is no face-to-face lecture but all students are given homework and quizzes to be monitored so that they can continue to learn French, " he said.

“There are actually many benefits during the MCO period for our best use. I hope we all support the efforts of the Malaysian government to stay home by praying solemnly for the protection of Allah Almighty as this is the only way to end this pandemic crisis,” he said.

Samsidine's views were agreed upon by Ainnur Shahirah Hashim, a graduate student from Indonesia, who agreed not to return home and chose to remain in Kelantan with friends.

“Since the first phase of the MCO, the E-campus digital platform has facilitated online two-way communication between lecturers and students including lectures, quizzes, video broadcasts, and more.

“I hope everyone supports the government's efforts to stay home safely with our families. We are also grateful to the Malaysian frontliners for protecting and saving many lives in the face of this coronavirus pandemic,” she said, living in Kampung Ketereh with Ainnur, Khadija Ali Elmi of Somalia.

The current number of UMK international students are 48 from 18 countries.

By: Corporate Communication Centre

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Kemaskini Terakhir: 22 September 2020




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