Putrajaya will lay off a total 17,000 political appointees to save public expenditure, prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad announced today.
He described the hiring of political appointees as a "wastage" the government had to deal with.
"We have too many contract officers, of whom some recruited as they were needed for administrative (works), while others given a contract due to political (reasons), they are the political appointees," he said.
"We will end (the contracts) of all the political appointees," he said.
"We found out that a total of 17,000 people are political appointees, we have to sort that out. This means saving (money)," he told a press conference at Perdana Leadership Foundation today.
He said, however, that low-income staff such as drivers, will not be terminated but relocated to another post according to their qualifications.
After taking office on May 10, Mahathir also announced that he planned to trim federal ministries to just 25.
Mahathir had pledged to relocate staff of the affected ministries to other positions within the government as well as GLCs.