Sarawak govt pondering ‘divorce’ from pension scheme to create own unique salary scheme

Abang Johari (second right) receives a satellite image of Gedong constituency from MYSA director-general Azlikamil Napiah (left) while (from second left) Awang Tengah, Abdullah and Dr Sim look on at the LANDAS dinner at BCCK Kuching on Feb 3, 2023. Photo credit: Ukas livestream

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By Karen Bong

KUCHING, Feb 4: The Sarawak government is thinking and looking at how to “divorce” the existing pension scheme and create its own scheme of salaries for the State’s civil servants.

Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg said as he had mentioned before, the government is looking at ways to better reward Sarawak civil servants because there are those with unsuitable salary scales.

“We are looking for ways to have our own scheme, not tied up with the pension ordinance. We want to use our own scheme in line with our management.

“I cannot promise this because we are still studying. So all I ask is for your prayers,” he said when addressing the LANDAS Summit 2023 organised by JTS at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here last night (Feb 3).

With Sarawak recording the highest revenue performance with nearly RM12 billion in 2022 and as the economy progresses while embracing new technology, Abang Johari expressed confidence that more Sarawakians working overseas will come back to help run Sarawak’s economy based on technology.

In line with Post-Covid Development Strategy (PCDS) towards making Sarawak an advanced and high income State by 2030, he added that Sarawak will need to increase its gross domestic product (GDP) to RM232 billion.

“Whether we can achieve it, I believe with the current workforce and new generation of Sarawakians and hopefully they are intelligent enough to come back, we can achieve our 2030 aspiration.

“I’m confident because Sarawakians working overseas with technological knowledge have returned home because we can offer good salaries, provide the technology and they can use their knowledge in the new fields. Many with experience in MRT (mass rapid transit) and LRT (light rail transit) operations are in Sarawak Metro as well as engineers in methanol plant,” he elaborated.

More importantly, Abang Johari emphasised that Sarawak is on the right track in efforts to transition into the new economy with carbon capture and storage, methanol production and any other resources which can be added value will become Sarawak’s new and additional revenue resources.

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan and Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian and Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Urban Development Datu Len Talif Salleh and JTS director Datu Abdullah Julaihi  were among those present. — DayakDaily