HR Ministry mulls separating roles of its two safety and health agencies

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 27 Jun 2019

BANGI: The Human Resource Ministry is planning to separate the roles of the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Department of Safety and Health Department (DOSH) through a new proposed bill.

According to Human Resource Minister M. Kulasegaran, DOSH and NIOSH played similar roles.

However, DOSH was geared more towards enforcement to ensure that employers were in compliance with safety, health and welfare at workplaces, whereas NIOSH was more towards training, he said.

"Since the DOSH’s role is important and it needs to be more active in enforcement, maybe the time has come for their roles to be separated,” he said to reporters after a Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebration at NIOSH headquarters in Bandar Baru Bangi on Thursday (June 27). 

Kulasegaran said the proposal to separate the two entities had yet to be given the green light by the Cabinet.

“But we have analysed this proposal, and we think that this is a good direction. The relevant papers are being drafted so it could get approval from the cabinet soon.

Kulasegaran said the proposal might be tabled to the Cabinet within the next one or two months, adding that it would also be forwarded to the National Labour Advisory Council.

In his earlier speech, Kulasegaran said the Human Resource ministry played an important role through NIOSH to ensure that the national workforce could get the necessary skills training.

At present, Kulasegaran said skilled workers only made up 28% of the workforce.

“By the end of next year, the government is targeting at least 35% percent of the national workforce to be skilled.

“If workers are given the right training, just like what NIOSH is doing, then they should be getting high salaries, which will also assist the government in its efforts to increase national wages,” he said.

Also present was NIOSH chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye, Deputy Chairman Gunasegaran Kandaswamy and Executive Director Ayop Salleh.

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