‘You’re not employed to warm your seat’, Abg Jo advises civil servants

Abang Johari greets some of the government staff upon his arrival at the Sarawak Civil Service Day assembly.

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By Geryl Ogilvy

KUCHING, Dec 4: Civil servants are expected to help the state government plan and implement development programmes for the benefit of the people.

They are not employed to just warm their seats or wait around to be instructed, Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg advised the state civil service here today.

He reminded that the state’s ability to plan development programmes and run its economy in a structured and forward-looking approach should also reflect the civil servants’ integrity as public officials.

Abang Johari (back row, centre) posing with representatives from the winning agencies in various categories for their excellent achievement and service delivery.

“Of course, there are problems, technical or otherwise that might crop up during the implementation of projects.

“However, we must be adept at troubleshooting and seek expeditious ways to make the necessary rectification and make up for any loss of time,” he said at the Sarawak Civil Service Day assembly at the Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK).

The Chief Minister added that the event, themed “Excellent Service Delivery through Integrity and Professionalism”, suited the state’s objective to strengthen initiatives by inculcating integrity in its civil service.

“Bribes and abuse of power are social ills that will only ruin the nation. Currently, I am satisfied with our efforts to ensure our service delivery is implemented with utmost integrity, such as our programme to place certified integrity officers in the ministry and government department.

“However, the presence of these integrity officers is not enough to ensure that we can achieve zero corruption, embezzlement and abuse of power.

“Our whole delivery system must strive to avoid being involved in activities that can affect our civil service delivery,” he continued.

Touching on project and service delivery, Abang Johari said the primary focus of the state Budget 2020 is on the development and transformation of the rural areas with financial allocation totalling RM6.6 billion out of the overall budget of almost RM9.9 billion to implement various infrastructure and utility projects.

State Secretary Datuk Amar Jaul Samion leading the state civil servants in taking the Sarawak Civil Service oath.

Sarawak government had formed the State Development and Coordination Committee to ensure that all projects approved in Budget 2020, as well as Budget 2019, are implemented and completed as scheduled.

“Our integrity goes beyond being non-corrupt or free of abuse of power as the people will also judge our integrity and credibility based on our ability to ensure that the projects we promised are delivered according to the budget and on time,” he said.

He cited the launching of the Batang Rambungan, Kuala Kemena and Batang Lasa bridge projects as examples, where integrity was key to ensure smooth and successful service delivery of the government to benefit the people.

Added with the soon to be launched Batang Saribas, Batang Krian and Batang Paloh bridge projects, as well as the RM1 billion Batang Lupar Bridge to be tendered out soon, Abang Johari said these bridges were some of the missing links of the coastal highway, which was vital for food production.

He said that all these projects, costing a few billion ringgit, were tendered out on open tender basis in line with the state’s aim towards transparency and good governance. —DayakDaily