KOTA KINABALU – The shortage of workers in the food service sectors has effected more than 500 Mamak restaurants in Sabah.
According to the Sabah Indian Muslim Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Datuk Baisul Khan Salman Faris; the Mamak restaurants alone need an extra 4,000 workers to accommodate the needs of eateries in the state.
“We have been facing with this problem for many years. We cannot cope if we don’t have enough workers. This effects the food industry in Sabah,” he said to the media at the press conference during the Malaysian Indian Muslim Congress (KIMMA) Convention, here today.
Baisul who is also the Chaiman of KIMMA Sabah said that this issue has been brought-up to the state government to increase the quota of foreign workers in the service sector but there is no solution yet.
The constraint made Baisul to come up with a suggestion to the government to give temporary working pass to the stateless youth in Sabah.
“This people just wander around doing nothing and causing social problems. If the government give them temporary working pass at least they will subside our shortage of workforce,” he said.
Baisul sees these stateless youth as potential workers. “They (stateless youth) are willing to work so that’s why I see them as potential workers,” he said.
He disclosed that most of the locals prefer to work in peninsula or other sectors.
“There has been poor response from the locals due to the long working hours. Even with the minimum wage and overtime pay; they are just not keen to work in restaurants,” he said.
He also stated that because the Mamak restaurants opens 24-hours, a lot of tourists come and eat at their restaurants.
“We are the only restaurants that opens 24-hours, so tourist do come and eat in our restaurants but due to the shortage of workforce; we are unable to serve them well,” he said. – By Fizah Yusof/SayangSabah