Issue of Salary and Working Hours

The First Meeting of the 14th Legislative Council Session continued its deliberations yesterday, focusing on issues of education, agriculture, fisheries and tourism. The meeting began its session yesterday afternoon with the Council hearing an explanation from the Minister of Home Affairs regarding the differences in salary gap and working hours in the government and private sectors, in response to the question raised by Yang Berhormat Awang Haji Abd Wahab bin Apong. Explaining on the issue, Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Kerna Dato Seri Setia Doctor Haji Awang Abu Bakar bin Haji Apong, reminded employees working in the private sector to report to the Labour Department if they find themselves working overtime. In 2017 alone, 67 employers have committed offences of violating the Labour Act. Touching on the issue of salary in the government sector, Yang Berhormat Pehin said that this has been allocated by service schemes set by the relevant agencies, while salary offered in the private sector are dependent on the current market, the ability of company and based on an agreement between and employer and the employee.

According to Yang Berhormat Pehin, working hours in the private sector are set by employee regulations and stressed upon by the company or the employer itself. However, according to regulatory laws related to working hours, namely Section 65 of the Employment Order 2009, which generally states that the working hour is not more than 8 hours a day, or 44 hours a week.

Meanwhile, working hour regulations in the government sector are regulated by the Public Service Commission Act, Chapter 83, General Order, specifically the Public Officers (Conduct and Discipline) regulations. Citing rule number 4, Yang Berhormat Pehin stated that office hours are normally 7 and a half hours a day, making a working week of 37 and a half hours.

Touching on enforcement and offences regarding working more than 8 hours a day and more than 44 hours a week, Yang Berhormat Pehin said that in 2017, labour operations have found 49 employers of violating the Labour Act, while 18 employers were found to have committed the offence through integrated operations, bringing the total number of employers who have committed the offence to 67. Employees who find themselves working overtime can report the matter to the Labour Department through telephone number 2381848 during working hours, or 7298989 outside working hours.

Source: Radio Television Brunei

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