IPOH: The government has no plans to downsize its 1.62 million-strong civil service, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (pic).
The Prime Minister said in fact the government has been increasing and providing better services for civil servants.
He said several Opposition leaders had insulted civil servants by calling them "kucing kurap", while Penang Institute said the country only required 430,000 civil servants.
"So if the Opposition wins, more than half of you (referring to civil servants) in the hall will be stopped from working.
"The Opposition has no respect for civil servants, but we the government have no plans to downsize, but instead want to increase the number of civil servants," he told more than 5,000 civil servants during a "Budget 2018" talk at the Sultan Azlan Shah Health Science College in Ulu Kinta.
Najib said that if the economy expands, the revenue would be channelled towards the country's development as well as to implement more benefit for civil servants.
He said civil servants were the backbone of the government and that the success gained for the country was a joint effort.
"Politicians alone must not get the credit because without the support, execution, ideas, and policy formation by civil servants, it is impossible for the government to transform the country into an advanced economy.
"The country wants to grow the economy from the current RM1.3 trillion to RM2 trillion by 2025, or even earlier, maybe by 2022," he added.