Special Raya bonus surprising when govt should be saving, says G25

G25 says civil servants and government pensioners, as a group, are the least affected by the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

PETALING JAYA: The G25 group of former senior civil servants has expressed surprise at Putrajaya’s decision to give special Aidilfitri payments to civil servants and pensioners at a time when the government should be saving its money.

In a statement, G25 said civil servants and government pensioners, as a group, were the least affected by the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

It said Putrajaya should be conserving its limited resources given the economic situation, adding that all sectors needed to prepare for a prolonged time of difficulty.

“The recent fall in crude oil price and the subsequent global economic recession will affect Malaysia tremendously in the coming months.

“It will take time before the government can strategise a recovery plan, such as a reform to the tax system that could strengthen the revenue base.

“In the meantime, the government should avoid spending extravagantly on allowances, perks and bonuses for its employees and pensioners,” it said.

G25 said Putrajaya should focus its aid efforts on marginalised segments of society who, unlike civil servants, did not have the assurance of employment and consistent salaries.

It also called on retirees receiving monthly pension payments of RM5,000 and above to donate their Aidilfitri payments from Putrajaya to a charity of their choice, adding that there were some who would greatly benefit from this small sacrifice.

It said the government should instead pay out a special bonus to frontliners, as they had made great sacrifices for the nation.

“As pensioners, we must guide the younger generation and lead by example. Pensioners should also think of others, especially when there are tens of thousands who are far more affected by the current crisis.

“Many civil servants and pensioners have already donated the money that they had received from the government’s previous economic stimulus package.

“Let us continue this act of compassion and generosity,” it said.

In a circular, Public Service Department director-general Mohd Khairul Adib Abd Rahman said civil servants on Grade 56 and below will receive a special Aidilfitri payment of RM500 while pensioners will receive RM250.

Those eligible are staff on permanent, temporary and contract-based appointments as well as those on full pay, half pay and unpaid leave.

For those with other agencies with separate remuneration management, the aid will be paid by their respective agencies.

Fake or not? Check our quick fake news buster here.