Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Full review of Industrial Reations Act overdue

Full review of Industrial Relations Act 1967 is required to make it more labour friendly and a better protector of the legitimate rights of the lower income workers
During the question and answer session in the Dewan Rakyat today, I have stood up to raise a supplementary question in relation to the Industrial Relations Act 1967 to the Deputy Minister of Human Resources.
I said that the entire Act needed to be reviewed and a detail study was required and then raised a specific question which involved two parts:-
1)       Presently the right to refer an Industrial case rests with the Minister’s discretion and whether this can be reviewed. 

2)        There are presently 2 vacancies in the Industrial Courts, namely the position of Chairman (Judge). One in johore Baru and the other in Kuala Lumpur. These vacancies have not been filled for over 8 months. 

It was disappointing that the Deputy Minister failed to reply to the above issues. She just read a prepared a text which was on the process of cases settled in the Industrial Courts.

Her reply was totally unrelated to the matters I had raised.
Unhappy with her reply, I stood up and asked her to reply to the issues raised by me.
She was speechless as it was obvious that she just did not know what to reply.
The Speaker then intervened and said my question was not “directly" related to the original question.
Speaker actually saved her from further embarrassment   !
She should be more conversant with her portfolio so that she will be able to provide good, relevant, quality answers to questions and issues raised in Parliament.
There are many provisions in the Industrial Relations Act 1967 which are out dated and arbitrary. In fact, some are even anti-labour in nature.Hence, full review of Industrial Relations Act is required to make it more labour friendly and a better protector of the legitimate rights of the lower income worker
12Outober20100 at 4pm

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