SM Sains first Sabah school to go cashless
Published on: Sunday, July 15, 2018

Kota Kinabalu: Electronic cash is the way forward and SM Sains Sabah (Smesh) took a step further by becoming the first school in the State to implement the cashless school system.The system uses the eM-ONEi digital wallet platform to enable users – both students and school staff - to make payments via an electronic card (eCard) at touch-and-pay terminals provided at the school's canteen and co-operative.

Commending the initiative, Education and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Yusof Yacob hoped the digital system will improve the efficiency of canteen and co-operative management in the school.

"The business transactions in both outlets will surely be smoother, apart from a more systematic account management," he said during the school's Parents and Teachers Association's annual general meeting cum cashless school system launching ceremony, at the school's hall, here, Saturday.

"Furthermore, it would be easier for parents to transfer money to their children or monitor their expenditure online through the digital wallet platform.

"I was made to understand that such system can also reduce money lost or theft in schools."

His speech was read by his Assistant Minister Jenifer Lasimbang.

Yusof also hoped the programme will be extended to other schools and learning institutions, especially after it is proven effective in the pilot project in Smesh.

"Smesh even proposed for the eCards' functions to be enhanced in future so that they can record students' attendance in the school," he said.

The cashless system was developed by MobilityOne and Smesh is the second school in the country to implement the system after another fully residential school in Pahang.

MobilityOne Chief Executive Officer Datuk Hussian A Rahman said they received many enquiries from other schools after the system was first introduced three months ago.

"After Sabah, we will go to Labuan and from there, we will try to expand the system to other schools.

"At the moment, we are focusing on secondary schools and later on, we will implement the system in primary schools," he said.

The eCard, he said, currently can only be used within the school compound and its usage will be stretched in future.

"We are licensed and monitored by the Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM)…so, we can operate nationwide.

"In order for the cards to be used outside of the school compound, we just need to appoint merchants."

Hussian said one of the best feature of the card is that parents can monitor and put a limit on their children's spending.

"Parents can reload the card with any amount but they can set a specific daily expenditure limit for their children so that they will only buy necessary things like food," he said.

Meanwhile, Jenifer said her ministry will follow up with the Federal Education Ministry soon on the issue of a permanent building for Smesh.

"Smesh is one of the top performing schools in Sabah and the country…unfortunately, the school has been using the former campus of the Kent Teachers Training College, here, since three years ago," she said.

The school was relocated from its original site in Bukit Padang after its structures were declared unsafe three years ago.

Since then, the Education Ministry had said that the school building would be demolished and rebuilt on the same site within five years.

However, there has been no progress so far for the reconstruction of the institution.

Also present were Tuaran Education officer Tah Nia Jaman and SM Sains Sabah (Smesh) principal Zaini Zair. - Ricardo Unto


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