Cuepacs: Income, prospects reasons why few non-Malays join public sector
KUALA LUMPUR, June 10 — Income and position are among the main reasons why non-Malays are less interested in joining the public sector, said Datuk Omar Osman, president of the Congress of Unions of Employees in the Public and Civil Services (Cuepacs).
He said non-Malays, particularly the Chinese, preferred high-paying jobs and wanted to hold an officer’s position when joining the public sector.
“They also see the public sector as a place with limited opportunities for promotions and higher pay,” he told Bernama today when asked to comment on a report on the Chinese in the public sector.
Last Thursday, Public Service Commission chairman Tan Sri Mahmood Adam was quoted by the Oriental Daily Mandarin newspaper as saying that only 2.1 per cent of the more than 1.12 million applicants for jobs in the public sector last year were Chinese.
Osman said the long timeframe for promotions was also a factor.
“For example, some of them had complained that they were not given a chance to be promoted though they had served for more than 10 years and had to sit for many exams and attend many courses.
“This is a prerequisite for promotion in the public sector and they should understand and go by the rules and not let up on opportunities,” he said.
The lack of interest among non-Malays, especially the Chinese, in the public sector was more evident from the small number who joined the uniformed services such as the armed forces and the police, he said.
Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall chief executive officer Tang Ah Chai said the Chinese were not interested in joining the public sector because they were not clear of the job scope and often had a negative perception of the sector.
Even though there was a lot of effort by the government to get non-Malays to join the public sector, such as by organising career courses and exhibitions, but these were ineffective, he said.
“Thus, I would like to suggest that they (the non-Malays) be taken on a visit to government departments nationwide, especially those related to the administration of the federal government in Putrajaya, to make them better understand the job scope,” he said.
Government Pensioners Association president Datuk Paduka Raja Wan Mahmood said history was a factor for the lack interest among non-Malays in the public sector.
He said that during the British colonial era, Malaysians were segregated by occupation, with the Malays in the public sector, the Chinese engaged in economic activities and the Indians in the agricultural and estates sector.
This became the norm and the Chinese came to regard the public sector as being only for the Malays, and they were more inclined to do business, he added. — Bernama