Riot: Employment Insurance Scheme to be tabled in July
KUCHING: The Employment Insurance Scheme, which is to ensure better protection for workers affected by retrenchment, is expected to be tabled in Parliament this July.
Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem, who announced this yesterday, said this scheme was already approved by the National Economic Council but its implementation can only take effect once it is legislated.
“This scheme will ensure employees who are retrenched, will be paid a certain amount of allowance for a certain period. What the quantum is like, what the period is like, I prefer not to say it here because it has yet to be approved by Cabinet and Parliament to make it into law.
“To me, this scheme is something new to the country, which is very, very important for any country. With the economic slowdown these days, a lot of retrenchment is expected to happen,” he told a press conference after witnessing the handing over of duties to the new state Labour Department director Jack Meredu Ko at Bangunan Sultan Iskandar here yesterday.
Riot pointed out this new scheme is one of the ministry’s targets for its Key Performance Indicator (KPI) this year.
He added the ministry’s officers visited Japan, South Korea and a few other countries to study similar schemes already implemented in those countries and to prepare the framework over the last three years.
He also mentioned another KPI target for the ministry this year is to get 1,000 veterans and soonto-retire Malaysian Armed Forces personnel to get skill certification under the Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning ( RPEL) programme.
He said this programme, similar to those in the United Kingdom and Australia, would involve the Human Resources Development Fund collaborating with Armed Forces Ex- Servicemen Affairs Corporation ( Perhebat) to enable ex- servicemen to find jobs upon entering civilian life.
On another matter, Riot said the success in implementing the Minimum Wages Order contributed to the Human Resources Ministry achieving 131 per cent of its KPI for 2016.
He explained the Minimum Wages Order which took effect on July 1 last year was one of the tasks set by the Performance Management and Delivery Unit ( Pemandu) under the Prime Minister’s Department for the Human Resources Ministry.
Although it was a difficult task to get employers to increase the minimum wage from RM900 to RM1,000 in Peninsular Malaysia and from RM800 to RM920 for Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan, Riot said the ministry had exceeded the set target in terms of compliance towards this new policy.
“We have achieved what we were tasked to do. In Sarawak for example, the ministry through the state Labour Department succeeded in implementing the Minimum Wages Order in 5,700 premises which is 26 per cent above the target we had set.
“The state Labour Department had also implemented 10,124 job placements, equivalent to a 92 per cent success rate for Sarawakians,” he said.
Riot earlier in his speech prior to the handing over ceremony said all the federal ministers had individual meetings with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on Tuesday on the KPIs for their respective ministries.
He said the Prime Minister seemed very satisfied with his ( Riot’s) ministry’s KPI. “I don’t know whether if our KPI is the best, but definitely it is among the best,” he said.
He also expressed his satisfaction that the JobsMalaysia counter in Urban Transformation Centre ( UTC) Kuching is playing an effective role as a matchmaker between job seekers and prospective employers.
Meanwhile, Sri Aman-born Jack Meredu Ko, 58, is the new state Labour Department director effective Feb 13 this year, succeeding August Buma who retired on Dec 19 last year.
Jack was previously the deputy director general of Peninsular Malaysia’s Labour Department in charge of operations.
In his speech, Jack said the department will carry out two Kenyalang Career Roadshows starting from Serian to Sibu and Mukah from March 11 to 19 and the second one from Bintulu to Lawas from Aug 17 to 25.
Riot (third left) looks on as Jack (second right) receives the documents from deputy director Sulaiman Ismail during the symbolic handing over of duties ceremony. Also in the photo are (from left) Human Resources Ministry deputy secretary general Datuk Mohamed Elias Abu Bakar, the minister’s political secretary Mejar (r) Datuk Peter Runin and former state Labour Department director August.