Thursday, April 30, 2015

Employment Security not 'job security', Direct employment Relationship, Regular employment until retirement?

EMPLOYMENT SECURITY - this means regular employment until retirement (there can still be retrenchment, dismissal for serious disciplinary reasons, resignation of the employee) - Malaysian labour legislation foresee this as the norm - whereby there are provisions for increasing entitlements as number of years of employment increases - annual leave, sick leave, etc. Even the formula for termination/lay off benefits provided for in the Employment Act provides for higher benefits if you have been in employment for a longer period (but no such benefits if your period of employment is less than a year - an indicator that Malaysia really is no for short-term contract or other forms of precarious forms of employment.)

JOB SECURITY - here the obligation is shifted to government to make sure that there will be jobs available if and when you are out of a job. The 'Job Security' guarantee is something which businesses are pushing for in their quest to be able to easily 'hire and fire', avoid statutory obligations of increasing worker entitlements, remuneration, even employer obligations - also as a means to avoid unions and strong workers. Well, short-term employees really will not have the time to form, register, get recognition of their unions or even enter into any Collective Bargaining Agreements. The fact that the employment relationship is now only for a year or less - employers can also easily get rid of  'trouble-maker' unions. This also allows for the creation and propagation of an afraid, compliant workforce - who will be easily exploitable. Will a worker in these precarious forms of employment relationship say 'NO' to overtime or 'excessive overtime'? Will they stand up for their rights? 

The Malaysian worker needs EMPLOYMENT SECURITY NOT Job Security - i.e. regular employment until retirement. This is more so needed, when today most workers are burdened with loans (housing loans, car loans, furniture/household appliance loans, etc) - and a loss of employment puts the worker and their families is serious jeopardy of sliding into great financial problems and difficulties.

With EMPLOYMENT SECURITY, there is generally an assurance of steady income ...and increasing income as years go by. If a worker finds himself out of a job in a year - because his employment relationship was based on just a 1-year precarious employment contract - then the question is whether he will be able to get another job with the same pay...(or more), For the professional and the highly skilled worker who are in demand, the chances are there are employers out there will to pay them the same or even more - but alas for the ordinary worker, things are bleak. 

As age advances, the chances of getting a job becomes slimmer. If one were pregnant, the chances of getting work is almost zero - who wants to hire you for a year or two, and allow you to be away for maternity leave.

It is true for certain industries, the option of regular employment until retirement is generally not there - for work really is until the building project is done - no, really until the particular phase of the building project is done - a painter will only be needed when painting starts and completes. But for all other businesses, regular employment until retirement is best - but alas, the Malaysian government over the years have failed to ensure the right to regular employment.

In fact, the Malaysian government have even been promoting the avoidance of DIRECT EMPLOYMENT - allowing businesses use workers at their factories and workplaces - who are not considered employees of the businesses that own and operate the workplaces. The said businesses still supervise and control the work done by the workers - but consider themselves not their employers. It is called the Contractor for Labour System - and despite the opposition of unions and civil society, this government has done nothing to abolish it. 

In 2011, 115 groups said 'NO' to labour law amendments ..and the protest continues

A just employment relationship dictates that all workers should be employees of the owner-operator employer not some other third party labour supplier, whether they be known as ‘contractor for labour’, outsourcing agent or by any other name. The relationship must be a direct relationship, to the exclusion of all third parties, between the employer who needs workers to do the work to produce the goods of their business for profits, and the workers directly who provide the necessary labour as required in exchange for fair wages and other benefits. 


93 Groups:- Abolish the ‘Contractor for Labour’ system Withdraw the 2012 amendments to Employment Act 1955.

93 - Mansuhkan Sistem ‘Contractor for Labour’ Tarikbalik pindaan 2012 kepada Akta Kerja 1955.

MTUC calls for the abolition of the 'labour supplier system'

Malaysian Bar Resolution on Employment Relationship and 'Contractor For Labour' (2012)

(1) That the Malaysian government immediately repeal the amendments to the Employment Act 1955 with regard to the employment relationship and the contractor for labour, introduced vide Employment (Amendment) Bill 2011, and pending repeal not put into effect the said amendments.

(2) That the Malaysian government do the needful to maintain existing 2-party employment relationships between principals or owners of workplaces as employers, and workers that work in the said workplaces as employees of the said principals and owners.

(3) That the Malaysian government promotes and protect worker and trade union rights in Malaysia, and not permit any form or discrimination at the workplace or related to work amongst workers doing the same work and/or working at workplaces of principals or owners.

(4) The Malaysian Bar takes the stand that labour suppliers and/or contractors of labour should never be or continue to be employers of workers after they are supplied, accepted and start working at the workplaces of principals or owners. Thereafter, these workers shall be employees of the principal or owners of the workplace.

(5) That the Malaysian Bar continues to struggle for the promotion and protection of worker and trade union rights in Malaysia, including for just employment relationship, basic living wages and freedom of association consistent with the Principles of Decent Work and other universally recognised standards and principles.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

1 May - Dataran Kemerdekaan Shah Alam - 8 pagi > Perhimpunan Pekerja

Saya telah dimaklumkan bahawa ada banyak aktiviti yang dirancang - turun memberikan sokongan kepada perjuangan pekerja dan kesatuan sekerja...pada pagi 1 MEI 2015...

HAK PEKERJA DAN KESATUAN SEKERJA DIHORMATI  - Dari Merdeka, kerajaan Malaysia telah menghakis banyak hak pekerja...



Worker and trade union rights in BN-ruled Malaysia (Part 1)

Workers’ and trade union rights in BN-ruled Malaysia (Part 2)





54 groups and unions:- Malaysian Airlines Must Respect Trade Union and Worker Rights Cease Anti-Union activities against NUFAM and its members


On 29/11/2013 MAS wrongly terminated Ismail Nasaruddin, the President of NUFAM, without even having a Domestic Inquiry, hence denying him the right to be heard and a fair hearing. Ismail was first suspended and then terminated allegedly by reason of a statement he issued in his capacity as President of NUFAM

After NUFAM was successful at the secret ballot(62.73%) and the Minister accorded recognition to NUFAM - MAS is challenging the recognition in Court.




Wan Noorulazhar, pekerja RENESAS yang juga Presiden UNION lah dibuang kerja pada 26/8/2011 oleh RENESAS di mana kesalahan yang didakwa majikan adalah bahawa beliau telah melakukan tindakan bercanggah dengan polisi khusus syarikat ‘contrary to explicit company policies’. Beliau didakwa membuat kenyataan mengenai cara RENESAS melayan pekerja di dalam sebuah kumpulan Facebook tertutup, di mana ahli kumpulan itu ada rakan pekerja.
Wan Noorulazhar bin Mohd Hanafiah, an employee of RENESAS who is the President of the UNION was dismissed on 26/8/2011 by RENESAS whereby the alleged misconduct, was that his actions were ‘contrary to explicit company policies’. He allegedly made statements about treatment of workers in a closed Facebook Group, whose members were fellow workers. 

Pursuant to a decision by the Malaysian Trade Union Congress (MTUC), which was also supported by the National Union of Transport Equipment and Allied Industries Workers (NUTEAIW),  to extract commitments on workers' rights from contesting candidates and political parties involved in GE13, workers throughout Malaysia, including in Pekan, met or attempted to meet  contesting candidates from all parties before election day, being on 5/5/2013.///Accordingly, on 3/5/2013, a group of 18 workers submitted the MTUC memorandum to one of the contesting candidates in the Pekan parliamentary constituency.
19/8/2013 - all 18 workers were terminated
Pekerja berpiket - di tangkap polis, ditahan polis semalam dan dituduh buat bising...

11 picketing workers charged for EXCESSIVE NOISE? 

MTUC shocked with the arrest and detention of 11 workers exercising right to picket


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

ASEAN governments urged to abolish death penalty

Press Release
24th of April 2015

ASEAN Civil Society Conference/ ASEAN People’s Forum 2015 (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) ASEAN governments urged to abolish death penalty

Civil society organisations from ASEAN countries are urging the grouping’s governments to impose an immediate moratorium on the use of the death penalty with a view of completely abolishing the greatest violation of the right to life - state-sanctioned killing. 

The “Death Penalty In Southeast Asia: Towards A Regional Abolition” workshop, held in conjunction with the ASEAN Civil Society Conference/ ASEAN People’s Forum (ACSC/ APF) 2015 in Kuala Lumpur this week, saw anti-death penalty advocates in the region calling for a cease in using the death penalty. The workshop was jointly organised by FORUM-ASIA, Amnesty International Malaysia, KontraS, Think Centre, and Anti-Death Penalty Asia Network (ADPAN). 

"At the ASEAN level, a strict application of the non-interference principle, which emphasises on the respect for state sovereignty, in the context of the death penalty is no longer relevant as the death penalty is an issue of all countries," said Rafendi Djamin, the Representative of Indonesia to the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR). He noted that a regional trend towards a moratorium had begun. Singapore had taken a step towards a moratorium and Malaysia had expressed intentions to consider it. He added that the AICHR would continue its thematic study of the right to life which will be accompanied by awareness-raising activities within ASEAN countries, including organising a workshop with the judiciary in ASEAN.

Within Southeast Asia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, and Viet Nam are retentionist countries that actively use the death penalty. Philippines and Cambodia abolished the death penalty for all crimes in 2006 and 1989, respectively, while Brunei, Laos, and Myanmar have had de facto moratoriums on the death penalty for decades.

The Deputy Secretary of Policy, Law and Complaints of SUHAKAM, Nurul Hasanah Ahamed Hassain Malim, said that the belief of some government officials that death penalty is a deterrent to crime and that abolishing the death penalty would be going against Syariah law are the two main challenges to abolishing the death penalty in Malaysia. A positive development, she added, was that the Attorney-General’s Chambers was conducting a study on the use of the mandatory death penalty for drugs.

The workshop also allowed anti-death penalty advocates in ASEAN countries to exchange knowledge and best practices to move forward possible policy dialogues member states.

On abolition, the Philippines’ Human Rights Information Centre's Executive Director, Dr Nymia Pimentel-Simbulan, said that a crucial strategy which led the Philippines to abolish the death penalty –making it the first country in Asia to do so – was active mobilisation of stakeholders. This, she said included civil society organisations, the Catholic church, members of the diplomatic community including the European Union, anti-death penalty champions in the Philippine Congress, families of  death row inmates and victims’ families against the death penalty. 

“Another key strategy that resulted in abolition was comprehensive research on crime statistics and the history of the death penalty’s use that made up a legislative kit used during debates in Congress,” she said. "Public awareness and education campaigns as well as case studies of women on death row were among other effective strategies which led to abolition", she added. 

The workshop’s speakers presented various practices and trends in the region’s use of the death penalty and discussed the possibility of bringing the agenda of abolishing death penalty to the ASEAN level, especially via the AICHR as the body with the mandate to promote and protect human rights in the ASEAN region.

Think Centre’s Executive Secretary, Ted Tan, in giving an overview of the use of the death penalty in Singapore, said that the latest statistics recorded 21 executions since 2007. He shared that the moratorium on executions (2011-2014) did not occur because of Singapore undergoing the UPR in 2011  but more likely due to the negotiations with the European Union over a free trade agreement. In fact there were 4 executions in 2011, prior to the UPR session.

He said, “We can expect executions to still continue in Singapore, since the government tightened the definition of capital punishment’s usage and the amended laws were enacted in 2013. Additionally the negotiations on the FTA were mostly completed by then. So to the Singapore administration’s mind, it was probably business as usual.”

He concluded that the death penalty is now likely to be imposed on cases of heinous crimes like murder, and the number of executions for convicted drug traffickers should be smaller in the future. Puri Kencana Putri of the Commission for the Disappearances and Victims of Violence (KontraS) briefed the workshop participants of its six-month fact-finding mission on recent executions in Indonesia, where serious loopholes were found with how the death sentence was meted out. “Elements of torture, mistaken identity, and delay in deaths for up to 15 minutes during an execution were recorded,” she said.

Puri noted Indonesia’s strong policy on how the government interprets “most serious crimes”, where the definition encompasses drug trafficking, adding that “anti-death penalty activists cannot rely on  rhetoric to win the battle against the death penalty in Indonesia.” The way forward, she said, should include an evaluation of anti-drug agencies in relation to their donors, as well as an increase in public education programmes. 

Another Indonesian speaker, Jakarta National University sociologist, Dr Robertus Robet, pointed out that the use of the death penalty was escalating under the administration of Indonesia’s Joko Widodo.

“Six individuals were executed within his first 100 days in office. Another 10 individuals currently housed in the Nusa Kambangan Island prison are expected to be executed in the near future. If plans move forward with the next round of executions, which include French nationals, there would be a bigger hit back to the Jokowi policy.”

In closing, Atnike Nova Sigiro, ASEAN Programme Manager of FORUM-ASIA, emphasised “the importance of institutional and legal reform as well as a change of culture and values that encourage retaliation and vengeance, for which regional solidarity is indispensable”. As one of the organizers she added, “The ASEAN People’s Forum is one important venue to bring solidarity in abolishing death penalty in this region”. “Now in Indonesia, a Philippines citizen, Mary Jane Veloso is one among the list of persons to be executed soon. The conference calls for solidarity from the people of ASEAN to call on the government of Indonesia to stop the execution of Mary Jane and also for other inmates on the list”  Atnike concluded.

Amnesty International Malaysia,
Think Centre, 
Anti-Death Penalty Asia Network (ADPAN).