DPM: OKU quota won’t be affected by plans to reduce size of civil service

Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail says posts reserved for OKUs in the civil service will be maintained. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail says posts reserved for OKUs in the civil service will be maintained. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, April 20 — The government's plan to the reduce the size of the civil service will not affect the policy of having one per cent participation by OKU (people with different abilities), said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.

She said posts reserved for OKUs would be maintained.

“We (government) want more OKU to join the civil service. Currently, the one per cent target has not been met, so we will preserve the vacancies allocated for OKU,” she  told reporters after officiating the  2017/2018 Malaysian Association for the Blind (MAB) Excellence Awards ceremony here today.

She said the government was currently focused on meeting the one per cent quota for OKU before planning on increasing it.

Apart from this, she said, various efforts were being taken by the government to encourage the private sector to hire OKU, including tax exemption for employers on expenditure to  meet their needs.

Earlier, in her speech, Dr Wan Azizah, who is also Women, Family and Community Development minister said according to the Public Service Commission, as of the end of last year, some 3,800 OKU  or 0.31 per cent were appointed to a range of positions in the civil service.

She added that her ministry had surpassed the one percent target with 144 posts or 1.77 per cent filled by OKU of the 8,138 posts as a whole.

Dr Wan Azizah said the Defence Ministry came in second with 0.98 per cent of posts filled by OKU while the Terengganu State Secretariat Office was in third place with 0.97 per cent posts filled by OKU.

The policy on one percent intake of OKU in the public sector was introduced in 1988 and was implemented through service circulars in 2008 and 2010, outlining affirmative solutions to be taken by ministries, agencies and departments , she said.

She said various ministries and agencies had established policies, programmes apart from providing assistance to elevate the socio-economic status and wellbeing of PWDs.

“My Ministry, through the Social Welfare Department provides cash assistance to registered OKU , namely, aid for assisting devices, allowances for disabled workers amounting to RM400 per month as well as Launching Grants of up to RM2,700 for OKU to pursue income generating projects,” she said.

She said her ministry’s plans for 2019 was to conduct two studies on OKU specifically on employment opportunities and also on the support system for carers and guardians of OKU .

“Both studies will be headed by Institut Sosial Malaysia. The implementation process for these studies have already begun and is now in the process of identifying the most suitable research team for the projects.

“I believe that upon completion of the studies, the ministry will be able to gauge the current situation of OKU and possibly formulate specific roadmaps as well as evidence-based policies and programmes focusing on this target group,” she said. ― Bernama