PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) has taken minister M Kula Segaran to task over his response to reports that Malaysia will hire between 100,000 and 150,000 security guards from Pakistan.
Responding to a news reports by Pakistani media outlet, The Nation, the human resources minister had said he was in the dark over the matter and that it fell under home ministry’s purview.
“They (home ministry) make the decision,” he said after launching a programme at his ministry.
However, MTUC said under the current legislated procedures for employing foreigners, an application must first be sent to Kula’s ministry.
It accused Kula of washing his hands off the matter.
“As the minister of human resources he should be the first person to seek clarification from the home ministry and not leave the task to the media,” they said in a statement.
MTUC also questioned Kula’s claim that there were 700,000 vacancies available. The minister had made the claim when denying allegations that there was a lack of job opportunities.
“Kula needs to show more responsibility instead of merely repeating his claims that there were enough of well-paying jobs for Malaysians.”
MTUC went on to say that if the report of Pakistanis being brought in as security guards was true, it would compound issues surrounding the increasing number of foreign immigrants with low salaries in Malaysia.
An influx of Pakistanis, especially for sensitive jobs such as security guards, is also worrisome to ordinary Malaysians, it said.
“Bringing in tens of thousands of low-skilled Pakistanis who will be paid at best the minimum wage of RM1,200 prior to the slew of salary deductions and entrusting them with the security of neighbourhoods, public and private buildings and banks is a daunting thought.”
MTUC said it also posed serious questions on the need to increasingly farm out such jobs to low-skilled foreigners with no prior relevant experience.
Foreign workers in Malaysia, MTUC noted, have long been victims of poor wages and deplorable living conditions and have been exploited by unscrupulous employers.
MTUC urged Kula to verify the report with government leaders and Pakistan authorities to protect the rights and interest of the public and workers. -FMT