| Dusit (centre) together with DBNA’s deputy president Yunus Apok |
(second left), SDGA’s deputy president Noelle Lily Morse
(second right), BGA’s secretary Ani Solep (right) and OUNA’s
representative Ungan Lisut.
This was the question raised by the Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association (SDGA) president Dr Dusit Jaul who is heading a special committee on the Dayaks serving in the Federal public civil service.
The committee is represented by various Dayak non-governmental organisations (NGO) like Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU), Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA), Orang Ulu National Association (OUNA), Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association (SDGA) and Bidayuh Graduates Association (BGA).
Dusit said so far only four Dayak leaders had responded to the committee’s call for more Dayaks to serve in the Federal public civil service — PRS president Tan Sri Dr James Masing, SPDP president Tan Sri William Mawan Ikom, PRS deputy president Datuk Joseph Entulu and Kanowit MP Datuk Aaron Dagang who raised the issue in Parliament recently.
Dusit said Masing has brought the issue to chief secretary-general of State while Mawan launched the outreach programme in Pakan and Entulu launched a similar programme in Nanga Skuan, Selangau.
“Hopefully more of our Dayak leaders will come forward in support of the programme while the committee would like to thank those Dayak leaders who had come forward to assist us in the programme, adding that a concerted effort should be done to get more young Dayaks to apply to enter the civil service.
Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association (SDGA) president Dr Dusit Jaul, who is heading a special committee formed to help Dayak youths to serve in the Federal civil service, said he found it strange why only a handful had come forward in support of the programme.
“Hopefully, more Dayak leaders will support the programme which is the way forward in working together towards a common cause.”
The special committee is represented by several leading Dayak-based non-governmental organisations (NGOs), including Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU), Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA), Orang Ulu National Association (OUNA), Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association (SDGA) and Bidayuh Graduates Association (BGA).
Dusit said there should not be race favouritism in the distribution of jobs in the civil service.
He said the selection of candidates should be based on merit. Although he did not mention any specific race, Dusit wanted PSC and the Government to be fair to the Dayak community.
On career development, Dusit said: “Getting a job is one thing but do Dayaks in the government service get their fair share of career development (promotion) in the Federal government departments and agencies?
“This is also the Dayak plight which the Government should also look into, after all the Government has been talking about merit. They should walk the talk.”
According to Dusit, there is much frustration among the Dayaks in the civil service because they have been denied promotion opportunities despite possessing the required qualifications, skills and capabilities.
On the online application, he said there was no telling if applications were getting fair treatment from PSC.
Dusit said because of this uncertainty and doubt, the special committee would be coordinating closely with PSC on the issue.
“We will monitor the implementation after the job application stage. The Dayak community wants to see results.”
On the existence of “little Napoleans” who might try to sabotage the applications made to PSC, Dusit said: “We trust PSC and the Government to be more transparent. Let them do their jobs first, we will act later if we discover something is not right in the process.”
According to Dusit, every year about 50,000 vacancies of all grades in the Federal departments and agencies under the Federal PSC for those 41 and below, would invite applications.
“If the Government just gives the Dayaks (Iban, Bidayuh and Orang Ulu) 4% of the 50,000 every year (1,500 a year) that will be good enough.
“To me, as the president of the Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association, the issue of low intake of Dayaks in the civil service shouldn’t have arisen in the first place because we Dayaks have helped in the formation of Malaysia.
“This is a lesson where community engagement is crucial towards fairness and justice. We are not demanding more than what is due to us. We just want fair treatment,” he added.
On the need for the programme, Dusit said online application was a huge disadvantage to Dayaks.
“Most of our people are in the rural areas where Internet access is either poor or the technology does not yet exist. Yet PSC only accepts online applications.
“The other reason is the difficulty in accessing PSC website and lack of awareness among the Dayak youths on how to go about applying for government jobs online.
“In our random survey, many Dayak Form 5 school-leavers don’t even know what SPA stands for and they are also unaware of SPA’s function,” he said.
Dusit also said some Dayak youths were sceptical about applying for jobs in the civil service after so many of their applications went unanswered.
“Yes, they applied. They spent money renting computers at cyber cafes after travelling for hours from their kampung in the far-flung interior to reach town.
“Then what happened was that, there wasn’t even a single reply from PSC. Not even telling them if their applications were being looked into, let alone being called for interviews,” Dusit explained.
According to him, the special committee now has outreach schedules at 17 locations in Dayak majority areas throughout the state to help the Dayak youths with their applications.
Dusit said the Dayak NGOs involved in the programme were taking their own initiative with their own money and manpower to organise the online application programme.
“We are operating on very limited resources,” he said adding that until September, the committee had helped with 26,000 applicants.
On the challenge — to get 100,000 Dayak youths to apply — thrown by PSC chairman Tan Sri Mahmood Adam, Dusit said it was a figure for the committee to work on.
“If we can get another 10,000 by end of the year, we will have been successful. The main thing is we want to see many more Dayak youths accessing the PSC website and learning to apply for jobs online as compared to before now,” Dusit said.
He said going forward, the special committee would continue with the process of engagement with the relevant commissions including the State PSC, Education Service Commission, Legal and Judical Service Commission, the police and army.
He said annually there were about 400,000 intakes of teachers under purview of the Education Service Commission, Royal Malaysian Police (100,000), Malaysian Armed Forces (100,000) and State PSC (100,000).
Others are Legal and Judicial Service Commission and jobs under the various government statutory bodies like the Pepper Marketing Board, Malaysian Cocoa Board, Mardi, Felda, Felcra, Salcra and local authorities which are not under the purview of the Federal PSC.
A team of PSC officers was at the DBNA headquarters recently for the training of trainers to DBNA and BGA volunteers who will be assigned to the outreach programme.