26 September 2023

MALAYSIA: Proposed recruitment quota a “can of worms”

Start the conversation

The recruitment policy of Malaysia’s largest State should establish an ethnicity-based quota system in its civil service, according to Minister of Works, Dato Sri Alexander Nanta Linggi.

Mr Nanta (pictured), who is Secretary-General of Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), said via a Facebook post that often times, only a small number of non-Malay candidates were recruited into the Sarawak civil service.

“The Dayaks and Chinese often feel marginalised as they do not get a fair chance in getting employment opportunities in the public service,” Mr Nanta said.

He recommended the Sarawak Government establish a quota system at the recruitment level “which is where the injustice usually begins”.

Backing Nanta’s recommendation, former Bukit Assek Legislative Assembly Member, Irene Chang said this should not only apply to the overall count of employees, but also to each hierarchical position in the State’s civil service.

“The lopsided civil service representation is an age-old issue which many are reluctant to voice out,” Ms Chang said.

“However, if we are to move forward together as Sarawakians and to bring our State to her highest potential, this issue must be acknowledged.”

Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) President, Bobby William said Nanta had “opened a can of worms” by suggesting a quota system based on ethnicity.

“It is true that non-Malays, especially the Dayaks, are being marginalised when it comes to recruitment of officers in the Sarawak civil service,” Mr Williams said.

He cited the civil service in Miri Division whereby there were no non-Malays occupying positions of authority.

“In addition, the legal framework of the Sarawak Land Code and Forest Ordinance has subjected the Dayaks to administrative and legal abuse,” Mr Williams said.

“In this instance, the Dayak customary land rights claims are a matter of dispute.”

He said PBDS also noted that the recruitment of persons in authority in the public sector and government-linked companies was also dominated by one race.

Sibu, 12 February 2023

Start the conversation

Be among the first to get all the Public Sector and Defence news and views that matter.

Subscribe now and receive the latest news, delivered free to your inbox.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.