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Wednesday October 2, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday October 2, 2013 MYT 6:49:05 AM
PETALING JAYA: More than RM2bil was spent on security guards in schools nationwide, but the service provided was of questionable quality.
The Auditor-General’s Report 2012 cited “significant weaknesses” in the standard of the guards although the Education Ministry spent RM2.052bil on security services from 2010 to 2012.
The report said 74% of the 35 schools audited were not given the personal details of all their security guards. 76 out of 129 security guards working in the audited schools had no security clearance to prove that they had no prior criminal records.
One guard at SK Kampung Jawa in Klang was found to have a criminal record, but the report did not specify the nature of the crime.
Nine guards were above the working age limit of 58, and eight other guards over 55 did not have proof of their physical fitness as required.
“The companies involved said they found it difficult to immediately fill vacancies with staff below the age of 55.
“They also said it was hard to obtain security clearance as there was a high turnover of staff and the clearance took too long.
“As a result, the quality of service and health of the guards is questionable,” said the report.
Of the 35 schools, 11 had CCTV that did not meet contract specifications or had no CCTV at all.
Three schools were not furnished with burglar alarm systems as provided for in their contracts.
According to the report, schools should have four guards altogether, two in the morning and two at night, with each guard working a 12-hour shift.
The report said errant security firms were not penalised for failing to meet their contractual obligations.
In its reply to the Auditor-General dated June 11, the Education Ministry said it would review the terms of security contracts to ensure that companies provided details of their guards within two working weeks for new employees and within seven working days for replacements.
The ministry also said it had informed the relevant schools and state education departments to “make deductions in payments” to security companies breaching contractual terms.
Sources from schools, however, said security firms are appointed directly by the ministry and not by the schools.
According to the ministry, 777 complaints and 623 warning letters were issued to security firms from 2011 to June this year.
“From 2011 to May 2013, the Procurement and Asset Management Division conducted 27 visits to 855 schools.
“Aside from that, in 2011 and 2012, the Internal Audit Division also carried out monitoring visits to 1,338 schools to check on the performance of contractors, including security firms,” the ministry said, adding that it laid down guidelines earlier this year requiring schools to report on contractors’ services.
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Education, AG Report 2012
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