Leaders asked to take pay cut during emergency

Francis Siah

KUCHING: A Sarawak activist has suggested that government leaders nationwide take a 50 percent pay cut over the next seven months of the emergency.

Francis Paul Siah said Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and his cabinet should take the lead in the pay cut to show that they are earnest in assisting those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

He pointed out that taking a pay cut would be a significant gesture in showing solidarity with the less fortunate. 

“It will surely be appreciated by all, including those who do not benefit at all from such acts of generosity,” he added.

In March last year, federal ministers decided to contribute two months of their salaries to help with the Covid-19 pandemic in Malaysia.

“I am grateful for their generosity and sense of obligation. However, I also feel that they should do more than just a one-off act of donating two months of their salaries to the pandemic fund,” Siah said.

He noted that many of the ministers and deputy ministers were not actually ‘working’ as many are reportedly infected, in quarantine or staying home.

“Civil servants are the ones running the various ministries and the government.

“Ministers should be honest and come clean. Most of them do not deserve what they are being paid now. There is not much official work to do. Do not think you are paid with taxpayers’ money for politicking,” said Siah.