Communications and Multimedia Minister Annuar Musa has revealed that the rollout for the first phase of the PerantiSiswa tablets has been delayed once again. He blamed the delay on the second tender that had to be opened up after the Ministry of Finance (MoF) ordered his ministry to cancel the first tender.
The minister clarified that the new tender has been closed and a new vendor has been chosen, although he did not disclose which firm won the contract. According to Annuar, the MoF is expected to either approve or reject the deal next week, as procurements above a certain threshold require the thumbs up from the ministry.
Should it receive approval, the tablets are expected to begin distribution to IPTA and IPTS students as early as August. Keep in mind, of course, that the first rollout of PerantiSiswa was supposed to commence in June before being pushed back to July when Annuar announced the re-issuing of the tender.
The first phase saw about 100,000 applications which are currently going through the approval process. Despite that, the minister revealed that K-KOMM will be opening up registrations for phase 2 of PerantiSiswa for two months from 1 August to 30 September.
The second phase will extend the eligibility for the programme to Institut Pendidikan Guru (IPG) and matriculation students. Tentatively, Annuar said that the distribution for phase 2 is expected to begin around October after registrations have closed.
While the government has revealed the minimum specifications of the tablets, the exact details such as the brand are still a mystery although the minister said that he will be revealing the brand name and other specifics in parliament on 4 August. Before we forget, the tablets given to students under the PerantiSiswa programme are loaner devices, meaning that they will have to be returned after graduating.