JOHOR BARU, Sept 4 ― The Johor Pakatan Harapan (PH) government assured the public that the soon-to-be appointed village chiefs will not be mere political appointees as their capabilities will be assessed.
State Housing and Rural Development Committee chairman Dzulkefly Ahmad said the final selection process, through a state government committee, will also not involve politicians.
“There are no politicians in the selection committee that is tasked with assessing the level of capability of an individual to be appointed as village chief.
“The state government wants to have village chiefs who are qualified and can perform their duties for their respective community,” he told Malay Mail today.
Dzulkefly said the village chiefs will be selected in a clear and transparent manner, in accordance with the spirit of reform under PH.
He expects the appointments to be completed this month.
“We are seriously looking at the reappointment or appointment of the village chiefs without delay as their official appointments must take place before the October 1 deadline,” he said.
For Johor, the selection will enter the final phase beginning next week, following the recommendations by the committee which is made-up of senior Johor civil service members and district officers.
“The final list of names will be vetted to check for issues related to crime, bad personalities, insolvency and so forth, before being sent to Johor state secretary Datuk Azmi Rohani for final endorsement.
“It’s no easy task as the appointments will involve a total of 674 village chiefs for all 10 districts in the state,” he said.
Prior to this, the services of over 1,000 village chiefs were terminated in June, after PH formed the state government following the May 9 general election.
Some were appointed politically by the previous Barisan Nasional (BN)-led administration.
Former Johor mentri besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin had criticised the termination of the village chiefs as “cruel”.
However, Johor Menteri Besar Datuk Osman Sapian cleared the air and said those who have been terminated were still receiving their monthly allowance of RM1,000 until their positions are filled by new village chiefs.
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