(Petaling Jaya, Monday): On Tuesday, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad would be giving a special briefing to Barisan Nasional MPs and State Assemblymen on the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC).
The Prime Ministerís briefing on the MSC should have been for all MPs and Assemblymen regardless of political party - whether in government or in opposition - because Information Technology (IT) and the quantum leap for Malaysia to leapfrog into the Information Age is a national issue which should transcend political party differences.
There is a need for a greater national awareness that Malaysia is still very far behind other countries in terms of general IT literacy and the importance and urgency of raising this general IT literacy in the country if Malaysia is to succeed to become an international IT hub in the new millennium.
All MPs and State Assemblymen, whether in government or opposition, should seek to raise awareness of IT among the Malaysian public at large, particularly among those who are currently non or unconfident users of information and communications technologies by removing the social, educational and cultural barriers to people who would like to know more about computers, Internet and IT.
Parliament and all the State Assemblies should form IT Standing Committees to promote IT literacy among all sectors of the people and popularise the concept of the information society where Malaysia can fully benefit from the information and communications technologies.
For a start, there should be a programme to make all Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Parliamentary Secretaries, Chief Ministers, Mentri-Mentri Besar, State Executive Councillors, MPs and State Assemblymen and women IT-literate within a year so that they could be role models to help the people, particularly those above 40 years, to overcome their fear of computers and IT.
Parliament and all State Assemblies should also have interactive homepages whereby members of the public can have access to Parliamentary and State Assembly proceedings as well as their elected representatives.