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Monday, 9 August 2010

Half a million Malaysians banned from leaving country, PTPTN loan an emotional strain on grad

Half a million Malaysians banned from leaving country


PETALING JAYA: About half a million Malaysians have been banned from leaving the country.

The 424,653 persons have been blacklisted mainly for defaulting in tax payments, not paying educational loans and also for being declared bankrupts.

Those blacklisted include high profile individuals carrying titles of Tan Sri, Datuk Seri and Datuk.

> The Insolvency Department has the bulk of those blacklisted, with 196,473 persons (46%) declared bankrupt;
> The blacklist comes from 13 government agencies, which also includes the Inland Revenue Board and the Immigration Department;

> The youngest person blacklisted is just 25.

Related Story:
VIPs and celebs placed in travel blacklist

PTPTN loan an emotional strain on grad

I AM a recent graduate with a huge PTPTN loan hanging over my head before I can even get a headstart in the working world. My total loan amount was RM48,000. From the time I started working, I have been paying small amounts based on what I can afford but unfortunately, what I can afford is not even close to the so-called administration fees.

My opening balance for this year (after paying a chunk last year using my graduation reward cash from relatives) was RM46,964.94. On Aug 6, when I checked on my account transaction history in PTPTN’s E-FES, I was startled to see a closing balance of RM47,054.51, which is RM89.57 more than my opening balance of the year.

This would be all right if I had not made any repayment. However, from January to July, I paid RM714.94. Instead of a reduction in my balance, to my utter disbelief, PTPTN charged RM804.51 as administration fee for that same period of time.

Coming from a fresh graduate who is not even earning above RM1,900 (after EPF deductions), living in Kuala Lumpur and travelling to the city centre for work, this has put a strain on my financial and emotional health.

Recently, a report mentioned that almost half a million people have defaulted on their PTPTN loans. 
Discounting the ungrateful ones who have the money but refused to pay, those like me who are struggling to pay have been mercilessly burdened by PTPTN. During my study years, my parents often had to come up with the cash first and there were so many semesters when many of us would be barred from examinations because PTPTN had not banked in the money before the due date. There would be a long queue of students trying to get “unbarred” when the time taken could have given us more study time, reduced stress and emotional turmoil before the examination.

The administration fee imposed by PTPTN is ridiculous. Sooner or later, I may have to default on my loan, not because I don’t want to pay it but because I can’t afford to pay.

Subang Jaya

Monday December 27, 2010

200,000 borrowers default on student loan repayments

TEMERLOH: More than 200,000 out of 1.75 million National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) borrowers have defaulted on their loans.

The loan defaulters are considered hard-core borrowers who made no effort to repay their dues even if they manage to gain employment, said PTPTN chairman Datuk Ismail Mohamad Said.

He added these defaulters also didn’t take the initiative to consult the corporation to re-schedule their repayments if they have yet to enter the job market.

Ismail said the corporation had given out RM37bil in study loans since 1997 to 1.8 million students.
“PTPTN was supposed to receive RM5bil in arrears according to its repayment schedule, but only RM2.1bil has been returned so far.

“Some borrowers are already employed but they still refuse to pay up.

“Once the Perbadanan Tabung Pendidikan Tinggi Nasional Act 1997 is amended, we will start making mandatory monthly deductions from the borrowers’ salaries next year,” he said after presenting school bags and study awards to about 200 pupils from the Kuala Krau parliamentary constituency here on Friday.

Ismail said the amendments, if passed, will give the Inland Revenue Board the power to deduct the salaries of errant borrowers.

“Errant borrowers will be blacklisted and can be taken to court if they still don’t respond to notices to repay their study loans,” Ismail said.

Earlier this month, it was reported that the PTPTN has written off RM59mil worth of study loans granted to 2,162 graduates who obtained first class degrees for the first seven months of this year.

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