Saturday, July 19, 2008

Locals vs foreign workers - a prolonged dilema

The government will TRY to reduce the number of foreign workers from about 2.1 million currently to 1.8 million by 2010, the year Pak Lah plans to handover leadership to Najib.

Now, everything is about 2010 (except for Samy Vellu who wants to stay on until 2012).

I believe that Najib, as the chairman for National Foreign Workers Committe, will be less worried to see that figure drops by 300,000 two years from now.

OK, fine. As Human Resources Minister Datuk Dr S Subramaniam says all parties, including government agencies and employers must work hand-in-hand to reduce the number of foreign workers in Malaysia.

This include preparing the locals with sufficient technical know-how in various skills, namely construction, plantation, manufacturing, etc.

The ministry, too, is coming up with several measures to enhance Malaysians with related knowledge by setting up more training centres such as the Advance Technical Traning Centre (ADTEC) and Industrial Training Institute (ILP).

However, its not going to be that easy, Subra. I know your ministry well enough. A big chunks of your development progammes which are already under implementation, are not well-equipped.

I have been to some ILPs and ADTECs, some of which dont have many enrolments, some are under-utilised and the rest are not fully-equipped with the right machineries.

Emphasis must be given to hi-end trainings such as automotive, electronics, aviation (what happened to the plan to set up an aviation training centre in Kedah?) and others. Maybe former minister Fong Chan Onn got some answers.

To woo locals to enrol, is no problem, I suppose but to provide them with proper training, especially at diploma level, should be a main focus.

Some aspects of the ministry has been politicised to the extent that in some parts of the country, which already got similiar facility, was given and will be given another one - to the interest of politics.

Locals should not compete with foreigners when it comes to job-acquiring. Although it is a fact that many Malaysians are choosy lots, many more are still jobless due to the intake of foreign workers by the private sector, on a lower salary.

Salary is another aspect that has been denying the locals with such opportunities. Should the government regulate that the private sector gives priority to the locals, and with tangible wages, it can be a successfull effort, eventually.

Nevertheless, we do need the foreign workers as part to fulfil our 2020 vision. The only thing lacking here is government's attention towards training.

No doubt that there are so many training centres, most of which belong to the private entities - but nothing can secure them the right jobs when students completed their studies.

Why? Some government's training centres are being treated like 3rd class institute. NO CLASS!


Anonymous said...

The real problem is not foreign workers (so long they have valid papers).

Send home those foreigners found to do business without proper licenses (do they issue licences to foreigners?) You can start at Chow Kit area first.

Send home those illegals.

Send home foreign workers caught
breaking any of this country's law - any law. Even traffic offence, give them 3 chances. 4th time von voyage !!

Those workers should not be given permission to work here more than say 5 years. Another group can replace them.

Wife and dependents need not accompany the husband since it is only for 5 years.

Too tough? You bet - we are living in a very tough world.


bujai said...

the problems with us is enforcement. at the same time, too many loopholes in our laws pertaining to foreign labours, the immigration, etc.

should we are able to synchronise every aspect of the enforcement, we might be able to subdue the problem...

lydia, tawau said...

now that the government is flexing its arms on immigrants in sabah, 90 per cent of whom are the filipinos, i am afraid that in the end, the diplomatic impact will be difficult to attend to.

what we should do is not to arrest them and send them home but to call a meeting with the respective governments and ask them to call them home in a more human way.

some of these people have stayed here for more than 20 years, married with locals and have children studying at malaysian schools.

if you talk about the nepalese, bangladeshis or others, then its ok.

i am not a filipino but these people have been contributing to sabah economy for decades.

the government should consider other avenues.

bujai said...

i do understand their predicament but if the government gives special treatment to one party, the the rest of them will demand similar treatment.

let our enforcement do their job. i believe there are ways to legalise them. just like you said, many have stayed in sabah for years and have become part of the society.

maybe the government will consider your views... hopefully

ex-ILP student said...

i agree with u that taking up courses at such training institutes will not bring us any good. why? no recognition from anybody!

bujai said...

ex-ILP student,

i am terribly sorry....