CAIRO: A new draft law for public sector employees has been prepared by the Ministry of State for Administrative Development with the aim of targeting employment of the youth, and solving problems regarding salaries and job promotion in the public sector, said Minister Ahmed Darwish on the talk show “Masr Enaharda”.
Darwish pointed out that the draft law has already been presented to the State Council, legal administrators, various political parties, and governmental employees, requesting feedback. Darwish said he chose to talk about the proposed law on the popular talk show in order to get feedback from the general public as well. Darwish’s hope is that the comments and suggestions he receives will help the law become well-rounded by the time it reaches parliament.
The new law is especially oriented towards fresh grads to make the employment process fairer. The young population is the hardest hit by the unemployment crisis, and frequently faces employment injustices in the public job market due to nepotism.
In an attempt to make the employment process more just, the proposed law includes a requirement that there must be an advertisement announcing every current job vacancy in the public sector, “so that everyone will get an equal opportunity to apply for it,” said Darwish.
The proposed law would also have the added requirement that an announcement be advertised each time a person is hired for a public sector job. Other applicants who did not get the job would thereby be able to see the qualifications of the person who was ultimately selected for the position.
Through the new law, employees will be promoted according to their job performance.
“[Public sector] employees stay in the same position for around eight years,” said the minister. “This is not fair, especially if it’s an entry-level [position] … A person with a number of years experience would be equal to a fresh graduate.”
The draft law will also adjust some discrepancies in salaries. Under the current law, salaries of public employees can vary greatly depending upon the timing in which a job performance evaluation is conducted.
“There will be no such thing as two people in the same position with each taking a different salary,” Darwish added.
Darwish also plans for the law to introduce the concept of a human resources department in the public sector. If passed, this department would replace the existing “Employees’ Affairs” department.
“An organization is valued by its human resources,” the minister said, “Employees are the most valuable asset in any organization, so we have to work on constantly training the employees, developing their skills and making them ready for their upcoming positions.”
The draft law also removes the existing concept of employees hired on a “temporary” basis, who may work for the organization for several years without a contract. However, Darwish pledged that they will not be getting rid of the current temporary employees if the draft law is passed.
“I can’t come now and fire someone who has been working for five years,” he said.
The draft law will also encourage the implementation of rewards and punishments.
Employees who are caught receiving bribes will immediately be fired, which is not directly stated in the current law.
If an employee is caught receiving a bribe of, for example, LE 300, the prosecutor general will not refer the case to court because the case would cost much more than LE 300 to prosecute. Under the current law, when there is no criminal case pending, the employee does not get fired. They are merely penalized.
“In return of all the benefits the employees are getting, I’m asking them to be productive and efficient,” said Darwish. “If they do this, they will be rewarded through bonuses and promotions.”