Socso says Utusan employees who lose their jobs will get EIS assistance

TheEdge Tue, Aug 20, 2019 08:15pm - 1 year ago


KUALA LUMPUR (Aug 20): The Ministry of Human Resources, through the Social Security Organisation (Sosco), says Utusan Melayu (M) Bhd staff who are losing their jobs will stand to get assistance from the Employment Insurance Scheme (EIS), which provides financial assistance, as well as help secure new employments.

"The EIS that came into effect on the Jan 1, 2018 is a dual component benefit that provides temporary financial assistance up to six months, depending on the contribution qualifying conditions, as well as employment services to assist beneficiaries in obtaining employment opportunities. Beneficiaries are assisted by their designated employment services officer to assist beneficiaries until they are employed, as well as monitored between one to three months after employment," Socso said in a statement today.

Socso also said it had earlier provided proactive support in the first round of retrenchment exercise done by Utusan Malaysia, by expediting the benefit payment that was supposed to start only on Jan 1 this year, as well as arranging job interviews for those who lost their jobs to ensure the bread winners could continue to provide for their loved ones.

"This measure also relieved the burden of the mentioned organisation, as we were able to assist the employers in exercising their obligation of providing some form of financial assistance in the meantime," Socso said.

Socso went on to say that providing immediate assistance for Utusan employees in the event of employment loss is a "priority", and that it shall continue to proactively provide services similar to the ones it provided to the first batch of workers who lost their jobs at Utusan Malaysia.

Utusan had in Sept 2018, offered a voluntary separation scheme (VSS) to more than half of its 1,500 workers, as part of its restructuring exercise to reduce overall costs. 

According to news reports, about 100 Utusan employees staged a demonstration outside their company headquarters, seeking payment of up to three months' worth of salaries which the company owed them. There were also speculations that the company would cease operations, if no solution is found to ease its financial difficulties.

As at end June this year, the company's total debts reached RM139.19 million. The company's shares slumped 4 sen or 36.36% to close at 7 sen today, leaving it with a market capitalisation of just RM7.75 million.






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