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Cuepacs slams proposals to abolish pensions for civil servants

Cuepacs says calls to abolish or reduce pension benefits for civil servants are ‘absurd and unwarranted’.

PETALING JAYA: Cuepacs has expressed its objection to any proposal to do away with or reduce the pension benefits of civil servants, describing such suggestions as “absurd and unwarranted”.

Its president, Adnan Mat, said pension should be regarded as a form of recognition for the civil servants’ services and contributions, rather than a burden on the government.

“The provision of pensions to civil servants should not be compared to those provided to MPs, elected representatives or individuals appointed as ministers and deputy ministers,” he said in a statement today.

Adnan’s response comes after remarks by former health minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who agreed with abolishing pensions for parliamentary and civil service personnel to help stabilise the nation’s finances.

“But this is for civil servants who are already in service … the pension scheme continues. All new civil servants, after a set date, for example, Jan 1, 2024, will all be enrolled in the Employees Provident Fund,” Khairy said in a recent ‘Keluar Sekejap’ podcast.

Previously, an economist had also suggested abolishing pensions for elected representatives and placing them under EPF.

Adnan said it was “incorrect” for any politician to question the pension, especially when most civil servants receive relatively small monthly payouts despite decades of service.

“We, civil servants, are not like politicians who serve for shorter durations, receive high allowances, and concurrently qualify for sizable pensions.

“Even during their service, civil servants do not command high salaries, and many continue to grapple with the adequacy of their modest pensions post-retirement,” he said.

He said that if the government is seeking cost-saving measures, it should instead consider consolidating the pensions of “deserving” MPs, rather than singling out civil servants.

“Cuepacs’ position is clear that they will not compromise on any proposal to reduce the existing privileges currently held by civil servants, including matters related to pensions,” he said.