Short supply of qualified workers leads to illegal hiring of security men

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Short supply of qualified workers leads to illegal hiring of security men

Post  ParameswaranRAM on Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:30 am

Short supply of qualified workers leads to illegal hiring of security men
By REGINA LEE
regina@thestar.com.my

PETALING JAYA: Many of the security guards looking after neighbourhoods, apartments and factories are employed illegally and this is no guarded secret in the security industry.

The high demand for security and short supply of qualified employees has led to the illegal hiring of foreigners and shady characters as guards.

Currently, only locals and Nepalese from the Gurkha ethnic community are allowed to be employed as security guards.

Security Services Association of Malaysia president Datuk Shaheen Mirza Habib said the demand for guards was set to rise further with the development of new apartments, shoplots and industrial areas.

He said some unscrupulous companies even employed drug addicts who were desperate for a job.

“I am very disappointed with some members who make contracts and then sub them to illegal guards,” he said.

The association has 600 companies with 150,000 security guards as members.

Shaheen, a managing director of a major security firm, said companies were already undercutting each other to offer clients cheaper guards.

“Big companies can afford to pay good guards RM12 to RM15 an hour. But if one pays a firm RM5 an hour, probably only RM3 will reach the guard's pockets and as a result, you end up with someone who doesn't have the discipline or the ability,” he said.

Shaheen said the association wants the quota of allowing only 5% of the security workforce as foreigners to be raised to 20%, adding that customers preferred foreign guards who perform better than locals.

He cited the reluctance of clients to pay more as the basic problem.

“You cannot pay peanuts and expect an army commando to guard your home,” he added.

A check by The Star at a gated residential area in Damansara showed that the guards were from India and Pakistan.

Meanwhile, mStar Online's IWAN SHU-ASWAD SHUAIB reported that the Government had allowed 10,000 Nepalese Gurkhas to be hired as security guards under the 6P programme.

Immigration Department director-general Datuk Alias Ahmad said currently about 150,000 locals and 5,000 Nepalese Gurkhas were employed as legitimate security guards in the country.

Alias said about 300 security guard companies had applied for the services of the Nepalese Gurkhas who had registered with the 6P programme.

Alias stressed that it was an offence for any company to employ security guards who were non-Malaysians or non-Nepalese Gurkhas.

“Nepalese who are not from the Gurkha ethnic community are also not allowed to serve as security guards here.

“Our reason for taking them (Nepalese Gurkhas) is because they are former British soldiers who have experience in the security service field,” he said.
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