Sunday, September 28, 2008

Follow what Sabah did by 'legalising' undocumented migrant workers.

How they dealt with the undocumented migrant worker situation in Sabah is interesting ..
A total of 55,030 illegal migrant workers in Sabah have been legalised as the comprehensive Ops Bersepadu crackdown entered its eighth week.

State Secretary Datuk Sukarti Wakiman said the workers registered themselves with the Immigration Department to process their work permits after obtaining the relevant travel documents from their country.

He said 41,899 were Indonesians while the rest were Filipinos.

Under the amnesty programme, Filipino and Indonesian workers can obtain their passports from their consulate office and get their employers to sponsor their work permit without having to return to their country. - Star, 28/9/2008, Over 55,000 illegal workers get their papers

In Semenanjung Malaysia, what we seem to be doing is to arrest, detain at Detention Centres, charge in court, whip them and deport.... and today most of the arresting is being done by the dreaded RELA - volunteers.

Migrant workers are here because there are employers who need them -- they come over through "illegal means" sometimes because they cannot afford to come here legally. Why is that? Because, before they come in there is a lot of money that they need to spend first - paying the recruitment agents, this fees...and that fees. This is an hurdle for the POOR worker who is coming over out of desperation, most of the times, or with the hope that he will be able to earn more and improve the well-being of himself and/or his family.

We need to get rid of all these monetary and other hurdles that results in many migrants coming over to Malaysia to work not in the proper way... not with the proper documentations..

Maybe, we should just allow migrants to come in to the country as 'tourists' with that 30 day(or less) social visit pass, and if they manage to find employment, then their local employer can register them as workers and get the necessary 'work permit'. If they cannot find employment, then either they will have to renew their social visit pass - or just go back..

But then, it would not solve the problem when it comes to the refugees who are running over to Malaysia seeking 'political asylum' - like the Acehnese, Thais, Filipinos and the Burmese. Of course, they left their country not the legal way - and in Malaysia, they do not have the option of even going to their embassy to get their passports, etc..

Talking about SABAH - the issue really is not the presence of current undocumented migrants - but the concern that many have been given citizenship and/or PR status wrongly in the past since the 70's and 80's that has resulted prejudice to the local native Sabahans...Today, it is said that these persons who received NRICs in this questionable manner and their children now make up maybe more that half the Sabah population. The whole ethnic/religious composition in Sabah was changed as a result of what happened.

That is the issue in Sabah - not the undocumented migrant problem today that we also have in Semenanjung Malaysia.

The call for the setting up of a Royal Commission to investigate the extend of this problem, who is guilty of committing this wrong and the solution to this problem today has fallen on deaf ears...

The BN government thinks that we are fools - and pretend that they are doing something about this (when in reality they are not). The do a crackdown on undocumented migrants - just like they do here in Semenanjung Malaysia almost annually...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I also hope politicians especially from PR, for once think of the hardship and the human rights of Malaysians from these illegal migrant workers. Even in the west, they sent them back, for goodness sake! Those EMPLOYERS must be fined and jailed; but instead they're given the easy way out! Further, many Mlaysians are discrimianted in terms of pay and getting hired, since these GREEDY EMPLOYERS are such 'evil' capitalist cheap-skates! Moreover, many of these illegal workers, many with possible criminal background, must be checked thoroughly (including legal ones, since we, women and girls in Malaysia, whether local or foreign, are so sick of being harassed sexually (minor or major forms) by migrant workers, especially from primitive countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh!(most of their women are covered up in burkhas - why they've shown no respect for 'exposed' women here!). These kind of workers must be deported immediately if they committed such crimes, or any crimes for that matter!