Upholding Professionalism and Caring for Our Defence and Military Personnel

Lt Gen Datuk Dr William Stevenson


Military personnel of the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) have a responsibility to maintain the highest standards of discipline and professionalism in conjunction with the roles and functions of the MAF, in safeguarding the sovereignty of the nation and defending it against all forms of threats. All personnel of the MAF must hold themselves accountable to the standards and expectations of professionalism regardless of their level or rank, whether in peace or on operational duties. Professionalism is achieved through the continued development of individual skills and competencies for success in the achievement of objectives particularly in the battlefield. Loyalty and selfless service to the nation is an obligation that is expected of all officers and personnel of the MAF.

With emphasis placed on professionalism, the MAF can then consistently ensure the highest standards of training and education which includes the provision of learning opportunities for personnel based on the required skill sets and competencies that are required of them in executing their respective tasks and duties. Officers and soldiers of the MAF will have the need to use lethal force when undertaking operational duties especially when in a combat situation which requires courage, discipline, teamwork and the highest standards of skills and competence. Apart from the competencies and skills required in achieving set objectives, all personnel of the MAF will be inculcated with values, norms and the military ethos that will develop every individual as a professional with high morale and dedication to duty.

Maintaining morale among officers and personnel in the MAF will motivate them in performing their respective task and service to the nation. Morale is a mental state and intangible quality that consists of many aspects including confidence in the equipment and weapons that are used, quality training of personnel, sound administration, comradeship and effective leadership. Esprit de corps is another aspect to strengthen. High morale is also maintained through spiritual, intellectual and materiel aspects, and trust that the MAF and the government cares for the well being of all military personnel. While morale is toughness as a mental rather than physical quality, the government will ensure that the MAF is fully equipped with the best weapons and equipment to undertake its roles and functions. The MAF will equip its personnel and train them to the highest standards with the mental well being that is necessary for every personnel to undertake their tasks and duties effectively.

Ensuring the quality of life and career prospects in order to maintain a high morale amongst all officers and personnel in the MAF is another aspect that will be emphasised. The Ministry of Defence and the MAF will jointly ensure that key factors in maintaining a balanced quality of life of all personnel during peacetime and for personnel and their respective families when on operational duties are continuously monitored and acted upon with continuous improvement. This includes physical needs such as quality living quarters and working environments, and an effective system that will address specific needs particularly for personnel that need specific attention.

The MAF and the Armed Forces Council (AFC) will also place emphasis on an equitable system for the career prospects of all officers and personnel in the MAF. This will include providing opportunities for training and education for all personnel with a quantifiable performance system for selection of personnel based on individual accomplishments and best man for the job. While professionalism and performance standards are emphasised, the MAF will also ensure that recognition; and a fair and just system of rewards and career progression be maintained to ensure personnel are motivated through career progression and succession planning for all levels and ranks in the MAF.

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