Janitors Of Court House Went On Strike After Pay Dispute, Judges Volunteer As Tribute

Over the weekend, 200 court staff found themselves on toilet duty in Malaysia.

They swept, mopped and wiped their way across an expansive 8-storey court house in Kuala Lumpur because all the cleaners went on strike.

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The court staff even washed the toilets on all 8 floors of the court’s premises.

Checking off a laundry list

Who exactly were the janitors on the sprightly Sunday (29 Jul) morning, you might ask?

The laundry list of helpers includes the Chief Justice and Chief Judge of Malaya, High Court judges, Session Court judges, magistrates, a criminal lawyer and other court officers.

Don’t miss the priceless footage of the massive spring cleaning effort here:

No job too dirty

Chief Justice Malanjum, who led the sanitation charge, appeared to be “in high spirits” and clarified that he did not force anyone to participate in the “gotong royong” — which means volunteer work.

They had heroically volunteered and “came forward on their own”.

For instance, an admin assistant chipped in as she didn’t want to “leave it as it is” and the “court could not be left dirty”.

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Some had even taken the initiative to clean the toilets before the volunteer session.

Only one lawyer turned up

It is often said that friends are people who stick with you through thick and thin.

A certain lawyer, however, was the only one of his brood to turn up for the volunteer session.

Mr Kitson Foong, who practices criminal law, lamented,

As members of the Malaysian Bar, we are stakeholders. We should get up, dress up, show up and help clean up.

Me no work, me strike

Meanwhile, the regular cleaners were on a strike — because of a pay dispute with their contractor.

100 of 120 cleaners had taken a premature “holiday”.

According to Chief Judge Tan Sri Zaharah Ibrahim, the pay dispute arose due to a misunderstanding between the cleaners and their contractor.

She added that steps are being taken to make sure the problem does not happen again.

Meanwhile, the contractor is also sourcing for more cleaners — besides the motley court crew assembled.

Kudos to the toilet crew for the day

While we laud the officers for their willingness to help out, we’d do well to be humbled by the experience.

Not everyone would find unclogging a public toilet palatable.

And it’s nice that instead of using extra money to hire temp cleaners, they all pitched in to lend a hand instead.

Featured image from The Star TV.