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24 Oktober 2008

50,0000 CONTRACT WORKERS TO BE LAID OFF, SAYS CUEPACS

The Star
By SIM LEOI LEOI
24/10/2008

PUTRAJAYA: Cuepacs has warned that 50,000 contract employees in the civil service are facing retrenchment by the end of this year because of budget constraints.
However, the Public Services Department director-general Tan Sri Ismail Adam has allayed such fears, saying “it was business as usual.”
He said he had not issued any directive for department heads to cut down on contract staff, adding that it was up to each government department to decide whether to extend or terminate the staff they hired on contract.
“This is because the departments appoint the staff based on their own terms and conditions, particularly when the need arises for more employees to handle huge projects.
“Maybe some departments feel they have to cut back because of cost-cutting (needs) but not en masse,” he said, adding that even if contracts had been terminated it was not up to 50,000.
He said most of the contract staff were appointed for a duration of three months to a year.
Cuepacs president Omar Osman had argued that the Government could afford to retain the services of contract employees.
“These workers who were on a year-to-year contract do not enjoy the perks of permanent staff and yet performed the same tasks,” he said.
Omar said Cuepacs officials would assist the affected workers, adding that the first meeting would be in Kota Baru on Nov 6.

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