IPOH: Perak civil servants can rest assured that they will now work in an environment free from the duress of having to please certain political parties, said Mentri Besar Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin.
In his first keynote address at the state executive talk to civil servants on Friday, Nizar said the new Pakatan Rakyat government was now freeing them from such shackles so they could work with professionalism.
"I will not allow any wakil rakyat to pressure you into working for his or her benefit. We will advise you but we promise, we will never interfere in your work.
"You can now perform at your level best without having to subscribe to or work towards the agenda of a particular political party," he said.
He added that as such, it was time now for civil servants to use the opportunity to reassess and re-evaluate themselves.
"We are giving you a chance to reflect on the times in the past where you did not follow the general orders. Now you can get back on the right track," he said.
Nizar added that the state government would not bear any grudges against civil servants who had previously gone against the general orders.
"We understand why the civil service was less than satisfactory.
"We do not blame you. You were working under duress all this time and not in an environment where you could do your level best," he said.
"Finally, you have the freedom to carry out the duties as you were meant to, without having to feel stressed that you would be transferred out simply because you did not show your support to a certain political party," he said.
Nizar added that he wanted to erase the public's perception that government departments were rife with corruption and bureaucracy.
"We want people to look at these departments and say, 'This is a place of transparency and integrity'.”
Nizar also touched on the lackadaisical attitude of civil servants who spent more time on tea breaks than working.
"We understand if you want to go for your breakfast at 10am but you don't need to sit at the coffee shop until noon," he said.
Nizar also encouraged civil servants to give the state government feedback on any issue, especially if they felt displeased.
He pledged to cut back on wastage of funds in areas where the state government could, so that the additional money could be given back to the people in the form of welfare.