Lazy civil servants get their unjust reward
Vol XXVIII NO. 80 Wednesday 8 June 2005
BY AMIRA AL HUSSAINI
There is so much to thank God for this morning. The MPs finally have a reason to gloat. You see, I strongly believe in justice and it is only right that when someone pushes for something correct for a change, he gets rewarded.
Thanks to the MPs' persistence, combined with threats of angry protesters pelting the National Assembly with eggs and tomatoes, the government has finally bowed to pressure and agreed to do the right thing.
Giving government staff their rightful bonus should be taken for granted and not be a smelly fish dangled in front of thousands of hungry mouths, or used as a means for political pressure and extorting more from the government.
The fact that it is a one-off BD200 bonus, which will cost the government BD12 million, is scary though, because I strongly believe that not all civil servants deserve to be rewarded for doing nothing.
For instance, government workers on salaries of no more than BD800 a month, yet who live in lavish homes, whose children go to private schools, who spend their holidays in Europe and drive to their humble jobs in top-of-the-range cars, already take their annual or even monthly 'bonuses' - with or without the blessings of the MPS.
I hope they will do the right thing and donate the BD200, once it has been credited to their accounts in a legal manner, to charity.
I get angry every time I walk into a government organisation.
My pressure rises from the moment I step into the smelly foyer and walk up to the dirty elevators, or the smoke-filled staircases.
On my way to my final destination, my blood boils as I pass by near-empty offices, with staff either flirting on the phone, praying, off sick or have gone out to run errands for their families or private businesses.
While bonuses have become the norm in many companies and organisations - even in Bahrain where bosses are known to skimp and not share the spoils with their slaves - I don't think that everyone deserves them.
They should be given to those who work, who turn up on time, who serve their nation and who respect themselves and their jobs. I know this won't be possible here because there can't be a system of checks and balances to ensure a fair deal for deserving employees.
And I know that instead of grumbling, I should be thankful that it will be given to all equally - including women.