MELAKA: About 50% of the 1.62 million civil servants in the country are still unable to own their own homes due to the sector's minimum wage being "irrelevant" in current times, says Datuk Adnan Mat.
The Congress of Unions of Employees in Public and Civil Services (Cuepacs) president said the existing minimum wage made it difficult for the government to achieve the target of a household income of RM10,000 per month as well as the goal of making Malaysia a high-income country by 2025 in the 12th Malaysia Plan.
As such, he said the setting of the new minimum wage of RM1,800 was important to ensure that civil servants are able to own their own homes as well as provide for their family's transportation, education, health and food and drink expenses.
"Our salary projections make civil servants ineligible to buy houses especially in big cities and for those who are eligible, the houses they bought have been wearing out for decades and some of them who live in big cities can only afford to rent a room.
"Our current minimum salary for the first (job) appointment is mixed with fixed remunerations and COLA allowance (Cost of Living Allowance), which means that it is now close to RM1,900... (but still) far below the poverty line income (of RM2,208)," he said after the Melaka 2022-2025 Session of the Cuepacs Triennial Delegates Conference here Sunday (Sept 25).
The conference, officiated by Melaka state secretary Datuk Zaidi Johari, was also attended by Melaka Cuepacs chairman Norman Taib.
Adnan said that although there was a Malaysian Public Servant Housing Programme (PPAM), the number of housing units eligible to be purchased by civil servants based on the existing minimum wage was still insufficient because most of the housing units are beyond their means.
He said in addition, the issue of houses being "abandoned" for a long period of time, especially in Kelantan and Sarawak, caused civil servants to incur more monthly expenses to finance housing loans and (pay) house rent.
"Currently, Cuepacs receives several complaints that when the loan has been approved and paid in full by the Public Sector Housing Financing Board (LPPSA) to the developer, the houses are still not ready and cannot be occupied... and worse still, only the house pillars are there but the salary of the public servant is deducted every month.
"Therefore, we request a moratorium from LPPSA for two years so that civil servants are not burdened with (monthly payment) of housing loan financing and house rent," he said. - Bernama