The Prime Minister’s bold action deserves praise.

Kuching: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim should be congratulated for increasing civil servant salaries.

Callistus Antony D’Angelas, an international labor adviser at the Social Protection Contributors’ Advisory Association of Malaysia (SPCAAM), said the move was due to Anwar taking bold but long-overdue steps to revise the country’s civil servant salaries.

He added that progress cannot stop there with salary increases and that a gradual reform plan must be developed.

“The next step is only to increase the minimum wage to RM2,000.00 per month.

“It’s not enough to meet a living wage standard, but it’s a good next progressive step.

“We cannot rely on employers to do this voluntarily. This needs to be driven at a policy level,” he said.

In response, Mr. Callistus opined that the private sector needs to work on reforming the country.

“The first and foremost concern must always be the well-being of the people. The continued focus on private business profits as the main objective of policy has resulted in salary lags and severe cost-of-living issues in this country. “It created a crisis,” he said.

Having said that, he called on Anwar to encourage him to reform the Ministry of Human Resources and reorganize it as the Ministry of Labor.

“The focus should be on the interests of workers. The Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry and others are looking out for the interests of investors and capital,” he added.

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