KUCHING, Oct 16: Sarawak must maintain its autonomy over immigration at all cost, which is non-negotiable, said Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) president Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian.
Relaxing entry laws into the state, as proposed by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg for Sabahans, could create issues such as the Project IC 2.0 in Sabah, he added.
Dr Sim expressed concerns over the proposal to reconsider its stringent requirements for Sabahans entering the state.
“In order to safeguard Sarawak rights to immigration autonomy, SUPP’s stand is always firm and non-negotiable on those who wish to enter into Sarawak, where they must comply with the state’s immigration regulations and procedures.
“This applies to West Malaysians and Sabahans. Our stand have never changed and is non-negotiable in the past, present and future,” he said in a statement.
He added that due to the state’s strict immigration autonomy, Sarawak has never faced much illegal immigrant issue.
He warned the state to be on the alert, especially following the recent announcement from Pakatan federal government on the issuance of temporary passes to some to 600,000 to foreigners living for decades in Sabah from June 1 next year.
The group comprises current holders of IMM13 issued to Filipino refugees who fled to Sabah in the 1970s, economic migrants given Buring-Buring cards in the 1980s, and those who registered under the Federal Special Task Force Banci (census) cards in the 1990s.
Dr Sim was responding to Abang Johari, who was reported as saying yesterday that Sarawak could reconsider its stringent immigration requirements for Sabahans entering the state.
However, the chief minister said such a move would need careful study before implementation. — DayakDaily