Pressure group questions fate of contract healthcare workers after Feb 1

PETALING JAYA: Hartal Doktor Kontrak has raised questions over the fate of contract healthcare workers following a purported circular from the Public Service Department (PSD) that new appointments will be on a contract basis from Feb 1.

“All new officers will be appointed under contract from Feb 1, 2024,” the pressure group said in a post on X (formerly known as Twitter) on Wednesday (Jan 24).

“Question for @jpagov and @KKMPutrajaya @DrDzul. Will contract appointments still be 3+2+2 years like now? If yes, what happens after the end of 7 years?,” the group asked in its post on the contract tenure for healthcare workers.

“What if the officer wants to continue their specialist (training)?” it asked.

Hartal had also posted a purported circular dated Jan 15 signed by PSD director-general Datuk Seri Wan Ahmad Dahlan Abdul Aziz.

The circular said the Cabinet had decided on Jan 12 that a new mechanism was needed for the appointment of officers in the civil service to strengthen the service and streamline the government’s fiscal position.

He noted that the appointment mechanism was being ironed out through the amendment of the relevant laws and improvement of the system.

The Cabinet had also agreed that appointments be made via contract of service in 2024, in the interim period before the hiring mechanism comes into effect.

“The appointment of new officers in the civil service on contract basis will come into effect on Feb 1, 2024,” he said.

The circular was also copied to the Chief Secretary to the Government, Treasury secretary-general and the relevant chiefs of the civil service.