Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Malaysia Civil Service Revisited

Not too long ago, I got myself into a little "tiff" with UMNO Deputy Youth Chief, Khairy Jamaluddin when I released a press statement which cited the need for the Government to "streamline" a bloated civil service. I also stated that the accelerated increase in the number of civil servants was partially caused by the Government's policy of absorbing a "politically sensitive" pool of unemployed graduates into its fold.

As a result, the UMNO Deputy Youth Chief claimed that I was insulting Malays. Well, it appears that I'm definitely not alone with my opinions.

The Singapore Straits Times correspondent in Malaysia, Carolyn Hong, wrote an article "Stampede for govt jobs in Malaysia" on 24th September.
Last month, when [the Government] advertised for three electronics technical assistants and one electronics engineer, it was swamped with 9,216 resumes for the first job and 3,705 for the second.

The public sector, it seems, is the most popular employer these days.
And the reason?
It is the result of the government's drive to produce more graduates. One in every five Malaysian workers now has a degree or diploma, compared with one in seven five years ago.

Many new Malay graduates flock to the government sector because, as [economist] Datuk Dr Zainal [Aznam Yusof] said, they find it harder than others to find jobs in the private sector.
The article also quote a few other Malay economists on the jobs and employment situation in Malaysia. I'd certainly like to hear whether the UMNO Deputy Youth Chief will similarly think that what they are saying represents an "insult" to Malays.

The Government must face up to the problems faced by the bloated civil service as well as the increasing rate of unemployment among local graduates. To a large extent the very cause of the current problems faced, particularly by the bumiputera community, is ironically the New Economic Policy (NEP) itself, which was designed to assist them. Until the NEP is discarded and a more progressive policy implemented, the problems facing the community are only expected worsen in the coming years, and not as intended, improve.
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