Monday, December 11, 2006

40% Salary Increase for Civil Servants ?

The Malaysia's civil servants wanted a salary increase of up to 40% across the board. They claimed that their productivity and performance had improved. Some of the example given by Cuepacs ( Civil Servant trade union) are passports can now be ready within hours, and several government agencies had raised their key performance index and achieved ISO certifications. Another set of reasons given for asking the salary increment is petrol, water, electricity, toll rates has gone up and likely to be increased again. Civil servant are finding it difficult to cope with the increasing costs of livings as compared to salaried workers in the private sector.

I find it interesting that, with a population of 26 million people, we actually have a huge 1 million civil servants in Malaysia. That works out to 1 civil servant for every 26 citizen. After many huge privatization exercises, I am indeed surprised that there are still so many civil servants out there. We have not even take into consideration of the number of employees in other government related organizations. Honestly, with this huge number of civil servants, has there been significant improvement in civil servants' performance and productivities ?

The question is, is it productive to have such a high ratio of 1 civil servant to every 26 citizens ? How does this translate into improved productivity as claimed by Cuepacs as compared to 10 years ago ? Perhaps, when the ratio is improved to 1 civil servant to 260 citizens, then maybe it is appropriate for Cuepacs to stake the claim for improved productivity and performance.

No doubt, a passport application can now be processed and issued within a few hours. That merely gave an indication of the appropriateness of new technology being used in the Immigration Department, it has nothing to do with the improved productivity of the civil servants.

With regards to ISO certifications, it is basically a process of "do what you report, and report what you do", and a long overdue requirement for quality control and accountability. It has nothing to do with productivity improvement. ISO compliances are basically the basic job responsibilities of civil servants, and it should never be used to seek for higher salary.

Petrol, water, electricity, and toll rates increases are basically due to inefficiency in the management of resources. It should never be used as justification for another round of salary increases by civil servants. Right minded civil servants should find ways to work with the government and privatised agencies to ensure better and efficient management of resources to bring down the costs.

The Cuepacs also claimed that Civil servants are getting less compared with salaried workers of private sector. I would like to believe that this is a misconception anf fallacy. I have yet to come across a audited report objectively stating that private sector employees are better paid than civil servants. Therefore, Cuepacs should not resort to emotional justification for higher salary. Maybe Cuepacs should engage ASLI to prepare a report to substantiate their claims of civil servant being under paid compared to private sectors.

As a tax payer, I am not against better salary package for civil servants. But the productivity and performance of the civil servants must be significantly improved first. In addition, there are hard working civil servants, and there are also not so hard working civil servants. Any salary increase must be exercised on case by case basis in accordance to real performance and productivity, not across the board as proposed by Cuepacs. Irresponsible demand for higher salary without taking into consideration of real productivities and values added deliverables will create unnecessary inflationary impacts on our economy. General elections maybe coming soon, is this an indirect threat of using the 1 million numbers as an indirect form of votes selling?

1 comment:

meow meow said...

yeah, i was SO shock when i read this. 40%??? tell u what happened to me yesterday.

blackout early in the morning yesterday, around 6-ish. i made a called to TNB at 645am, and somebody called me back at 815!

i have decided leave from work earlier, so that this people can come n check and fix it before the sky turns dark!! and i actually called the help line around 4-ish so that they could get prepared or put in the schedule so that someone could come over around 5-ish when i reached home. and that person over the phone said, i should call back around 5pm. gosh.

alrighty, i called again while driving on the road heading back home. reply i received - oh report has been made, someone should be on their way. ok, thinking to myself, not bad~ not that hopeless afterall! waited and keep calling, 5-ish, 6-ish, 7-ish........ someone told me over the phone, it's only my house, then 7-ish, the whole area, then again at 7.45pm, it's only my house and report was only key in at 7-ish..... WHAT!!!!!!!!!!

and waited till 8-ish, fed up to the unbelieveable level, decided to go out to the nearby shopping mall.

just when i reached the outside car parking area and found a parking space, parked my car, got out from the car, opened the back door, taking my laptop, ring ring, my hp is calling me! alrighty, NOW THEY CALLED AND SAID SOMEONE IS WAITING AT THE GUARD HOUSE AND WANT ME TO GO AND BRING THEM IN!!!!

and when my house is lighted up, it was already almost 10pm.

do they deserve the 40%?? u tell me~ hahaha