Sunday, September 30, 2007

Kelantan To Review Maternity Leave

KOTA BAHARU, Sept 5 (Bernama) - Kelantan is also reviewing the maternity leave for working women in the state civil service, said Menteri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat.

However, he said the state government was not planning to adopt wholesale the federal government's extension of the unpaid maternity leave from 90 days to five years.

"In principle, we agree on the proposal for it would benefit working women who needed the rest. Kelantan will review the leave.

"However, we have yet to make any decision as we have not received the papers on the matter," he told reporters after chairing the state Executive Councillors meeting here Wednesday.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak on Monday announced the extension of the unpaid maternity leave to enable working women to give more attention to care for their children.

The leave could be broken up and taken several times but the total must not exceed five years.

Kelantan Public Service, Economic Planning, Finance and Development Committee chairman Datuk Husam Musa said there was no need for the unpaid maternity leave to be extended to five years as two years would be sufficient to mothers to breastfeed their babies.

"Our proposals include extending the paid maternity leave from two months to 90 days either with full pay, half pay or quarter pay.

"This does not mean we favour very long unpaid leave as working women would be without income for a long time. We are also planning to introduce paid `edah' leave (for widows)," he said.

He said the announcement on the revised leave would be made soon.


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