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KUCHING, May 18: Mandeep Singh, a special functions officer to Minister of Communications and Multimedia Gobind Singh Deo, was almost deported back to Kuala Lumpur after landing at Bintulu Airport yesterday evening.
He was stopped by immigration officers upon arriving from Kuala Lumpur to attend a function, where Gobind was the guest-of-honour.
Mandeep, who was a Bersih secretariat member, told online news portal Malaysiakini that he was still subjected to a travel ban imposed on him by the Sarawak government since his activist days.
“They said there is a ‘blacklist’ on me since 2016. So, it is not ‘Malaysia Baru’ (New Malaysia). There is no spirit of ‘Malaysia Baru’ in Sarawak,” he told the news portal.
Mandeep said Gobind, who was scheduled to make a two-day working visit to Bintulu, passed through immigration checks without a hitch and was waiting for him.
They had both touched down at the Bintulu airport at around 6pm.
Mandeep said he waited at the airport’s Immigration Department office for over half-an-hour for a final decision on whether he would be allowed through or be deported back to West Malaysia.
He said he was then given a special pass that would allow him to remain in the state for three days.
He also said he was told that he must inform the state government in advance before travelling to the state. — DayakDaily