The Sarawak government should revoke the work permits of Petronas’ existing non-Sarawakian employees in the state, instead of just freezing new applications, said state DAP.
This is so as to achieve the target of 70 percent local Sarawakians in both the top and middle management level of Petronas’ operations in Sarawak, said state party chief Chong Chien Jen in a statement today.
Chong said that the Sarawak government’s priorities are being put to the test, as it juggles Sarawakians’ interests on one hand, and the wishes of Putrajaya and Petronas on the other.
“The question, therefore, is: In this standoff, whether the state government is going to give in to Petronas and the powers that be in Putrajaya?” he asked.
Chong was responding to Petronas’ statement yesterday, where the oil firm defended its hiring practices in the state as being without bias or prejudice but based on requirements and merit, regardless of where the potential workers hailed from.
Petronas has come under fire over its allegedly unfair hiring practices in the state, which purportedly disadvantage Sarawakians and benefit peninsular-born Malaysians.
“Is Petronas saying that Sarawak has no qualified, trained and dedicated employees to fill up the top and middle executive level positions in Petronas’ Sarawak operation?
“This is surely untrue and an insult to Sarawakians,” said the Bandar Kuching MP.
He said there are more than enough qualified locals, but they are not given the opportunities in Petronas.
“The issue of giving more job opportunities to Sarawakians has been agreed to between Petronas and (Chief Minister Adenan Satem) since November, 2014. It was also reported by Adenan in the November 2014 Sarawak DUN sitting.
“However, more than 20 months have passed, yet only 39 percent of the management positions and 46 percent of the middle management positions are filled by Sarawakians in Petronas’ operations in Sarawak,” said Chong.
He said such statistics do not reveal any effort by Petronas to give more job opportunities to Sarawakians, unless it was only referring to lower rung positions.
“Petronas’ press statement seems to make it clear that it will defend such composition at its management and middle management positions in Sarawak,” added the state DAP chief.
He urged Petronas to stop giving excuses to defend what he claimed to be its “unfair employment policy” and to take immediate steps to rectify the allegedly lop-sided employee composition in its operations in Sarawak.