GEORGE TOWN: The state government will downsize its civil service workforce by 5% over the next three years, says state secretary Datuk Seri Farizan Darus.
He said the Civil Service Size Control scheme would be used to reduce the current 9,504 civil servants by about 475 positions between 2019 and 2021.
These 475 posts are permanent positions.
“The reduction will be carried out in phases, starting with a 1% reduction this year, followed by 2% for next year (2020) and another 2% in 2021,” he said.
Farizan, however, said that the downsizing exercise, which was introduced back in 2015, would not involve the dismissal of civil servants. (Existing civil servants will be retained but existing vacancies for empty posts will not be filled.)
“We only hope to optimise manpower in the civil service by not creating new positions.
“This means that there will not be any Voluntary Separation Scheme or retrenchment exercise,” he said during a Civil Servants Assembly yesterday.
Farizan said the downsizing would be carried out through the Repeal of Positions which have not been filled for more than two years, and the repeal of Temporal Position Change Scheme.
“Instead, we will look into long-term methods for the reduction like outsourcing, alternative service delivery, privatisation, automation, and the creation of posts only by necessity,” he said.
Farizan said the state would continue to hire for positions which need to be filled but emphasised that no new positions would be created unless it was a trade off position, or a case of manpower transfer.
“I believe now is the perfect time for the Civil Service Size Control as the cost of doing business has increased significantly, especially in preparing for the workers’ emolument,” he said.
Farizan also said there were 25 disciplinary cases recorded by the state administration between January and April involving offences such as absence from work, drugs and false medical certificates.
“Out of this, 16 civil servants had been fired.
“I hope all department heads will take immediate action against those committing disciplinary offences,” he said.
Separately, Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow announced that 3,905 civil servants in the state would be receiving a half-month bonus or a minimum RM1,000 under Bantuan Khas Kewangan.