Civil servants are not prevented from playing golf or joining sports activities such as motoring, but these must conducted as hobbies without involving interested parties such as contractors, said chief secretary to the government Ali Hamsa.
“It cannot be denied that many (civil servants) play golf but they are not involved with companies or interested parties. They play among themselves (civil servants), it does not involve bribery or betting,” he said.
He said any sport or activities which could involve cooperating with interested parties is not allowed at all.
“If there are contractors who want to treat or join in, do not involve golf games or overseas trips,” he told a press conference in Putrajaya today.
Without disclosing details, Ali said the Public Services Department (PSD) had taken action against several senior officers of a department who were involved in golf matches overseas.
Ali stressed that although there was much publicity on corruption cases involving civil servants, this did not mean that all government staff were corrupt.
“The majority or 99 percent have a high level of integrity,” he said, adding that there were currently 1.6 million civil servants.
He also expressed his support for the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) in combating corruption in the civil service and hoped that it would resolve all cases connected to government staff as soon as possible.
“We in the civil service hate corruption. Integrity is of utmost importance. I and all the secretaries-general and civil servants agree to uphold the principle of integrity in the civil service,” he said.
Commenting on the secretary-general of a ministry with the title ‘Datuk’ who has been remanded to assist in an investigation by the MACC, Ali said the officer had been suspended from duty and will be sent to the civil servants’ pool without any portfolio.
Later, at an event to present letters of promotion to management and professional staff as well as those in the implementation group after the press conference, Ali stressed that as the chief secretary to the government, he was confident that civil servants were honest and responsible in performing their duties.
He said reports of civil servants who were being investigated by the MACC for abuse of power had affected the image of the civil service.
“Do not let the actions of a small number of people affect the reputation of the entire group. We should prove to the people that the public service sector still has a high level of integrity,” he said.
He urged civil servants to increase their productivity and give the best service to the people while ensuring that government policies, projects and programmes were implemented in the best possible way.