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Thursday, July 22, 2010

ARTICLE: Streamlining the Malaysian Civil Service and Bureaucracy

Before I begin the article I'd like to give a personal comment.  What is the point of Subsidy Cuts on Fuel, TOLL, Food items, Healthcare etc when we have the HIGHEST per capita Civil Servants in the WORLD.   I'm talking about 1,000,000 (yes, 1 MILLION), ie. 1:25 (1 Civil servants PER 25 Malaysians).

Article 132 of the CONSITUTION OF MALAYSIA stipulates that the Public Service consist of:
  • the General Public Service of the Federation
  • the State Public Services
  • the Joint Public Services
  • the Education Service
  • the Judiciary and the Legal Service
  • the Armed Forces
For all intents and purpose, Statutory Bodies and the Local Authorities are also considered as part of the Public Service. This is because both these autonomous bodies resemble the Public Service in many respects since they adopt the procedures of the Public Service pertaining to appointments, terms and conditions of service and the remuneration system. Besides that, their officers and staff also receive pension and other retirement benefits similar to the employees in the Public Service.

The Irony is 95% of these 1,000,000 are Bumiputras.  Only 5% are NON Bumis (ie. 50,000).  But I'm not picking about this figures.  It's just that it's UNHEALTHY to have 1,000,000 Civil Servants!  During a visit to Immigration, I was shocked to see SO MANY STAFF (about 60 of them inside) wondering around there YET ONLY 5 out of 20 counters (ie. 1/4) opened to serve us!  What's the rest of the staff doing?  Minding their own business I guess...  Some can be seen Chatting to one another, one of them YAWNING Away, Few of them goes ONLINE, few of them READING NEWSPAPERS and ETC...  Clearly, this is a WASTE of our TAXPAYERS MONEY to Employ them...    Also, the 1.2BILLION+ ringgit spent to Construct the NEW PALACE!  How about Billions spent to Sponsor "1 Malaysia LOTUS F1 Team".  But these are another stories which I will NOT Dwell further...  CLEARLY, something needs to be done to "REDUCE the REAL SUBSIDY".

Back to this article, the article was WRITTEN in 2007.  The NUMBERS might INCREASE THIS YEAR!

Streamlining the Malaysian Civil Service and Bureaucracy
Written by johnleemk on 3:45:58 am Feb 25, 2007. 
One million. That's the number of civil servants we have. One million people living off a government paycheck. (And, if they're lucky, the occasional bribe.)

You tend not to think about government employees most of the time. After all, they're generally invisible, despite the important roles they play. The only time you might pay them any heed is when you get stopped by a policeman looking for some easy money, or when some bloke at the immigration department refuses to renew your passport over some minor paperwork issue.

But, still, one million is a huge number! That's one civil servant for every 25 Malaysians! To put this in perspective, the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh employs about one million public servants. The population of Andhra Pradesh, however, is in the range of 75 million people — and even then, it's considered to have a disproportionately big civil service.

Why are we so awash in civil servants? What's the cause of this oddity? I think a big contributing factor is the government's reluctance to create a class of discontented and unemployed malcontents. Their solution, then, is to employ anyone who is rejected by the private sector.

This in turn is probably the cause of our infamously inefficient civil service. And, if the government's actions are anything to go by, things will be getting worse as we go along.

Last year, in response to the problem of unemployed graduates, Deputy Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak declared that the civil service would be picking up the slack — an explicit admission that the government employs the worst of our graduates to keep them from turning against the government at the ballot box.

Around the same time, Parliament was informed that 70% of public university graduates are unemployed. Some people, including the now-famous Tony Pua (a probable candidate for a Parliamentary seat on the Democratic Action Party ticket in the next election), expressed incredulity, and suggested the statistics used must be flawed.

Whatever the case may be, the fact is that a lot of the graduates our public universities unleash on the country are not employable. And these unemployable people find employment in the government.

If the government is really serious about expediting efficiency, what it ought to do is begin retrenching these one million civil servants in stages. Offer them a generous pension comparable to their paycheck — the increased efficiency from a streamlined bureaucracy would make it worth our while.

The government could also do as one East European country did recently while downsizing its civil service. That country offered capital to any former civil servant who wished to start a business. Small and medium enterprises are the backbone of many economies, and it makes sense to turn former civil servants into entrepreneurs.

Of course, this would all be reliant on a government with the political will to dismiss inefficient civil servants, and on a government with the spine to enforce loans. From past experience, this is not the kind of the government we have.

So, till the day we change our government, this is what we will be stuck with — a behemoth of a civil service that exists only to provide a wage for the people not worth employing.



That's all folks, thanks for having the time and patience to read this blog entry

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