12th Parliament session, 4th term, 2nd meeting : Question time
Security guards’ minimum wage based on commission of inquiry report
THE minimum wage for security guards was determined following the setting up of a commission of inquiry on the terms of employment for these workers, Human Resources Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said.
The commission’s report, which was submitted to the ministry in 2003, suggested that a council be set up to determine wages for the guards.
“As a result of the study, the ministry determined that the minimum salary for security guards be based on provisions under the Minimum Wage Council Act 1947.
“The ruling came into effect on Feb 15 this year,” he told Teresa Kok (DAP – Seputeh), who asked why minimum wage was determined only for security guards and not for workers in other sectors.
Dr Subramaniam also said various aspects would have to be considered before a minimum wage could be fixed, including inflation, productivity, unemployment and gross domestic product growth.
He added that the National Wages Consultative Council Bill 2011, which was now being tabled in Parliament, was the main platform to deliberate and determine wages and salaries.
“The council’s role is to recommend a minimum wage for the Government to consider. The policy on minimum wage can be implemented at the end of the year after all the processes and preparations are in place,” he said.
At a press conference later, several Opposition MPs said the setting up of the proposed council should be reviewed because its decisions would not be binding on the Government.
“The council must be independent and autonomous in its decision-making process,” said Charles Santiago (DAP – Klang).
He added that the appointment of council members must be made through consultations with stakeholders, and workers and employers should have the right to veto up to one-third the total number of nominations.