State civil service must be based on fair racial composition, meritocracy — SUPP leader

Michael Tiang

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KUCHING, Nov 16: The racial composition in the Sarawak civil service must not only be based on meritocracy but must also be racially balanced, as ethnic diversity is a matter of basic fairness and key to the effective operation of the state’s administration.

Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) Youth chief Michael Tiang pointed out that his party president, Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian, had on numerous occasions appealed for a fairer and healthier race composition in the state’s civil service, particularly when speaking at the State Legislative Assembly (DUN).

“I agree with Datuk Talib Zulpilip (Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department, Integrity and Ombudsman) that when it comes to recruitment of civil servants, the merits of each applicant must be carefully considered by the Public Services Commission (PSC),” Tiang said in a statement today.

He highlighted this in response to the statement made by Talib on Nov 12. He told reporters after delivering his winding-up speech at the State Legislative Assembly that the composition of the state civil service was based on meritocracy.

However, in view of the fact that Sarawak is a multi-ethnic society, Tiang raised the need for all races to join the public sector so as to serve the needs of all races in different aspects and regions.

“Just imagine at a government office in Kapit, where the majority of local residents are Dayaks. If we don’t have any Dayak officers stationed there to communicate with the local Dayaks, I believe that officer would not be able to serve the people effectively,” he reckoned.

Citing previous statistics, Tiang noted that there were “blatant signs” of imbalance in the state civil service, where the Chinese and Dayaks were under-represented.

“We think it is unhealthy to see only a specific ethnic group being involved in decision making for the rest in Sarawak.

“Therefore, we must encourage people from diverse racial backgrounds to be involved in the public sector and together we can deliver better services that work for everyone,” he added.

On the other hand, Tiang also encouraged the Chinese not to shy away from serving in the public sector or view working in the civil service as their last option.

“Chinese must also play a pivotal role in our state civil service so as to assist the government to attain the goal of being an administration truly for all,” he urged. — DayakDaily