Artists are not exempt from the Work Act

PETALING JAYA: National Film Development Corporation of Malaysia (Finas) does not have legislative authority regarding the aspect of total working hours enforced through the Work Act 1955 (Amendment) 2022 from yesterday.

Chief Executive Officer, Prof. Dr. Dr. Nasir Ibrahim said the Malaysian Film Development Corporation Act 1981 (Act 244) did not give legal authority to Finas regarding the working period and artists were not exempt from the amendment.

“Act 244 cannot override the provisions of the Work Act 1955 which are applicable and in force in terms of total working hours.

“Therefore, the view that Finas has the authority to take action or set working time limits for artists is not accurate at all, in fact it contradicts the law,” he said in a statement.

Dr. Nasir hopes that the confusion and misinterpretation of some parties about the jurisdiction of Finas regarding the issue, especially involving the actors and filming production crew, can be corrected.

He said that every employee and employer in the film industry should be aware of the latest amendments to the 1955 Labor Act and comply with the number of working hours set in accordance with the terms and conditions of the contract between employers and employees provided under the act.

However, he said, Finas took an open and proactive approach by intending to invite representatives of film associations such as Seniman Malaysia (Seniman), Malaysian Film Professionals Association (Profima), Malaysian Film Association (FDAM), Malaysian Film Producers Association (PFM) and entities other interested stakeholders to discuss the issue.

“Finas is also ready and open to receive any criticism and constructive suggestions from all parties to ensure that the interests and welfare of the national film industry workers are always defended and protected,” he said.

Yesterday, the Employment Act 1955 (Amendment) 2022 came into force after being informed by the Minister of Human Resources, V. Sivakumar following the need regarding the issue despite calls from the industry to extend the delay period.

The amendments to the act include the reduction of working hours from 48 hours to 45 hours per week, the increase of maternity leave from 60 days to 98 days, paternity leave increased from three days to seven days and the prohibition of discrimination. – MESSENGER

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