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Review all employment laws

July 19, 2012

FMT LETTER: From V Anbalagan, via e-mail

The National Union of Journalists (NUJ) calls on the government to set up a commission to review all existing legislations, including the Employees Provident Fund Act that affects about nine million private sector employees.

The time has come to update in totality laws that affect workers during employment and after retirement.

A review is apt in view of the government having approved a legislation that extended retirement age of private sector employees from 55 to 60 effective next year.

The commission must obtain feedback from stakeholders like trade unions, employers, industrial law practitioners and individuals before amendments to the relevant laws are recommended.

The government in June set a special commission for 1.4 million public sector employees to study the transformation of civil service in a comprehensive and holistic manner.

The special commission was given six months to submit recommendations to the government.

When officiating a labour conference on July 9, Human Resources Ministry secretary-general Zainal Rahim Seman said the Employment Act 1955, the Industrial Relations Act 1967 and the Trade Unions Act 1959 would be amended next year to meet future business environment and economic growth of the nation.

He had said that amendments to the laws would serve to provide clarity and to ensure the appropriate level of enforcement is in place in order to provide fair treatment of employees.

He said if a sound industrial relations was practiced, it will promote economic stability and encourage foreign investment.

Apart from this laws, NUJ want the EPF Act 1991, Employees’ Social Security Act 1969, Workmen’s Compensation Act 1952 and Occupational, Safety, and Health Act 1994 to be relooked to keep up with changing times.

The writer is general secretary of NUJ


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