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By Ling Hui and Ashley Sim
KUCHING, Nov 10: Increasing the pay scale of the Sarawak civil service will need careful study, says Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.
He said all pensionable posts in the civil service are subjected to the Public Service Department (JPA) as all pensions are paid by the Federal government.
Therefore, he explained, the Sarawak government cannot create its own posts or a system of salaries and pension benefits without JPA’s approval.
“I have previously indicated that the Sarawak government would study the possibility of increasing the quantum of salaries in the (Sarawak) civil service as a way to stop corruption, much like what is being practiced in Singapore.
“Civil servants are not being paid enough to cope with the increasing costs of living, giving rise to the tendency to ask for takes, under-the-table money, abuse of money and et cetera,” he said.
At a Sarawak Civil Service townhall session on Sept 28, Abang Johari had revealed that he is pondering ways to increase the salaries of Sarawak civil servants in the hope of eradicating corruption within the civil service, following Singapore’s footsteps.
When launching Sarawak Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) Integrity Day at a local hotel here today, Abang Johari said he could be looking at a “bypass” of the system, but Sarawak needs to be financially strong and independent first.
“I am in the midst of preparing the sovereign fund. In this coming DUN (Sarawak Legislative Assembly), I will introduce our sovereign fund which includes a dormant fund,” he said.
Should Sarawak gain good returns, benefits would surely be shared with the civil servants in Sarawak, Abang Johari assured. — DayakDaily