Menteri Pendidikan Malaysia, yang sekaligus merupakan Presiden Dewan SEAMEO, H.E. Dato’ Sri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein didampingi oleh pejabat dari Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia mengunjungi dua pusat SEAMEO di Indonesia pada 5-7 Agustus 2008.With the SEAMEC President were: Mr. Mohd. Zulkifli Mohammed, Under Secretary, Policy and International Relation; Dr. Habibah Abdul Rahim, Assistant Director, Education Planning and Research Division; Mrs. Zafidah Ismail, Special Officer to the Minister, all from the Ministry of National Education in Malaysia.
Also present during his visit were: Dato’ Dr. Ahamad Bin Sipon, Director of SEAMEO Secretariat; Prof. Ir. Suryo Hapsoro Tri Utomo Ph.D., Secretary Director General of Higher Education; and Dr. Ir. H. Herry Suhardiyanto, Rector of Bogor Agricultural University concurrently the SEAMEO BIOTROP Governing Board Member of Indonesia.
In his speech during his visit at BIOTROP, the Minister emphasized the role played by SEAMEO Centers in the exploration on the direction of the region. He said that there is a growing concern on climate change, global warming, shortage of food, biofuel and shortage of land.
Indonesia and Malaysia should discuss about vocational training skills focusing on agriculture. The minister believes that BIOTROP has the expertise to organize this vocational training on agriculture. It is hope that by 2010, the conduct of vocational school training on agriculture will be expanded to other places in Indonesia.
H.E. Dato’ Sri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein also added, “if we don’t resolve the problem on shortage of food, our children will not survive in their future”.
The SEAMEC President and his entourage, with officials from the Indonesian Ministry of National Education also toured around the Exhibition room and laboratories of the Center, after a brief opening program.
Dr. Handoko, BIOTROP Director, welcomed the visitors and gave a brief presentation of the programs and projects of the center, followed by welcome remarks from Dr. Herry, Rector of IPB.
After the visit, the convoy of cars carrying the visitors proceeded to the SEAMEO Regional Center for Open Learning and Distance Education (SEAMOLEC), then to Yogyakarta.