Get minimum wages info from the horse’s mouth
BINTULU: No one in Malaysia can claim that he or she is an expert on the Minimum Wages Order 2012, said state Labour Department director August Buma.
He opined it was impossible for anyone to be an expert on this legislation as it was enacted only recently.
August said this in response to an enquiry from a participant during a briefing session in Sibu recently.
The participant wondered why explanations given by the department did not sync with those by a consultant he had come across recently.
“I am not discouraging you to join seminars which may be conducted by a consultant engaged by your company for various reasons, but the best advice will come from the Labour Department.
“We are the one who will enforce the Minimum Wages Order 2012, and we are the one that you should come to see to seek further clarifications,” August said during a briefing on the implementation of the Minimum Wages Order 2012 here yesterday.
He advised all employers to be careful when inviting consultants or lawyers to brief them on the policy which will be come into effect in two stages – Jan 1, 2013, and July 1, 2013.
August said among the objectives of the policy were to ensure the basic needs of workers and their families were met, and to ensure sufficient social protection for workers.
“It is also aimed at encouraging the industry to move up the value chain by investing in higher technology and increase productivity by reducing dependence on unskilled foreign labour.”
Minimum Wages, he said, represented the lowest hourly, daily or monthly wage that employers should pay employees or workers.
For Sarawak, Sabah and the Federal Territory of Labuan, the minimum wage is RM800 (monthly rate) and RM3.85 (hourly rate), while for Peninsular Malaysia it is RM900 monthly and RM4.33 hourly.
Minimum wages cover employees whose wages do not exceed RM2,500 a month; manual workers irrespective of their wages; and any other employees as defined under the Labour Ordinance (Sarawak Cap. 76).
It excludes domestic servants, such as cooks, house-servant, butler, child’s nurse, valet, footman, gardener, washerwoman, watchman, groom and driver or cleaner of any vehicle licensed for private use, as well as apprentice.
Also present at the briefing, held at Bintulu Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, were the Chamber’s president Datuk Sia Hiong Ngie, Sarawak Labour Department senior assistant director Dzulzalani Eden and its branch office senior assistant director Tujuh Bochal.