KUCHING: Retrenched employees of Sanmina-SCI (M) Sdn Bhd are hopeful that the state government will step up its efforts to protect their rights and assist them to secure employment.
“We are here because we are unhappy that the company retrenched the workers without any warning even though they have been planning the restructuring for many years.
“In addition, the compensation they offered us is too low,” former manufacturing group leader Anne Linda told the Borneo Post when met during a peaceful protest staged by the retrenched workers in front of the old DUN building yesterday.
“We hope that Sanmina will pay us because we have the right to receive the compensation due to us. We have served so many years, like in my case 16 years, so of course we want the best payment.”
The 37-year-old single mother from Serian said her ex-colleagues were frustrated and angry with company’s management for not being transparent with their employees.
Many felt they were unjustly and dishonestly treated despite their many years of loyal service to the company.
“The 0.66 per cent compensation is not enough, and it is not what we want. We served and struggled hard to give our best to the company to achieve (its goals) every quarter,” said Anne, who started working with the company in 1996 after she finished STPM.
“They only gave one week notice, whereas they are supposed to give two months to people who have served more than 10 years. This is part of the reason why some of us are here, to claim the remaining 7 weeks.”
She has begun searching for another job, but admitted that she was worried about her prospects as it was not easy to find similar work in the local electronics industry.
She added that employers also preferred to employ people below the age of 30.
When asked if they would consider retraining to improve their job prospects, Anne and her ex-colleagues with her instantly voiced a unanimous “Yes!”
“Of course I want the opportunity,” Anne said, whose daughter will enter Form 3 next year. We hope the government will really help us and give the best to us, try to discuss with the corporation, maybe give us training to find other jobs.
“I think the government should help us because we are 1Malaysia, we are Sarawakians. The state agencies should help us.”
When asked if she and her ex-colleagues would consider relocating to the Sanmina plant in Penang as suggested by certain parties, they were hesitant to give a direct answer.
“I am not sure if I will take up the offer because we have not been given guidelines on how they will manage us,” Anne said, voicing her fears that what happened to them in Kuching could also happen in Penang.
She added that the retrenched workers would have to consider other factors such as their families, the complications from moving across the country, and whether the salaries being offered was better or equal to what they previously received.