Petronas to meet Sarawak Govt over employment issue

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PETALING JAYA: The Sarawak Government will be meeting with Petronas next Monday to sort the issues regarding allegations of bias in the company’s retrenchment and recruitment of Sarawakians.

Deputy Chief Minister Douglas Uggah Embas said the meeting, to be held in Kuching, will see Petronas reps brief him and State Secretary Moshidi Ghani on the matter, The Borneo Post reported.

He added that a separate meeting will then take place with Chief Minister Adenan Satem.

“The issue is very simple: it is regarding Petronas’ employment in Sarawak because before this, there were some complaints that there was some unfairness.

“We want to know what actually is the situation. From there, we will see what is the next step.

“That’s why they are coming down to explain and discuss the matter with us. That is the only issue they are going to explain,” Uggah was quoted as saying by the Sarawak-based daily.

“Whatever they say, we want to know the truth. That is all. If what they say is right, then we won’t dispute. If there are some issues, we want the issues to be resolved, amicably. What we want is transparency and fairness, that is all,” he added.

Recently, Sarawak-based think-thank Suarah Petroleum Group (SPG) complained about Petronas retrenching Sarawakian staff, and about the majority of senior positions in the company being filled by non-Sarawakians.

Following the revelation, Sarawak announced on Monday that it would freeze all new applications for work permits for Petronas staff to work in the state, with immediate effect.

In reply, Petronas said that the “retrenchments” were in fact part of the company’s restructuring exercise and that it has had a number of engagements and briefings with Sarawak Government officials at various levels, following its restructuring exercise.

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