We, the Malaysia Youth and Students’ Democratic Movement (DEMA), would like to express our disappointment with Prof. Dato’ Dr. Mohd Amin Jalaludin, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Malaya’s failure to speak up against state interference with academic freedom.
It has been three days since Prof. Azmi Sharom was unwarrantedly charged under the Sedition Act. While students and the public are actively campaigning for academic freedom, there has been a deafening silence from the University of Malaya Vice Chancellor’s Office on this matter.
It must be reminded that, according to Section 9 of the Constitution of the University of Malaya (“the Constitution”), the Vice-Chancellor is the Chief Executive Officer responsible for, among others, the academic functions of the University.
Being also the Chairman for the Senate, we would also like to remind Prof. Dato’ Dr. Mohd Amin Jalaludin that he, together with other members of the Senate, is also responsible for the protection of academic freedom in the University, as per Section 17(2A)(h) of the Constitution.
The Vice-Chancellor’s inaction in this case has cast doubt on his ability to defend the principle of academic freedom as the ‘soul of a University’ and to secure the students’ right to unbiased education.
Therefore, we urge the Vice-Chancellor:-
- to declare his position on this matter immediately and
- to stand together with Prof. Azmi Sharom by officially demanding the Attorney General’s Office to drop all charges against the law professor.
《马来亚大学宪章》（Constitution of University of Malaya）第九条文清楚说明，副校长一职将是一所大学的总执行长。副校长也是大学教务委员会（Senate）的当然主席。根据该宪章第17(2A)(h)条文，副校长作为大学教务委员会主席，有责任与其他委员共同确保在大学的学术自由受到保障。