SDMC: Arrested illegal immigrants to be recruited for manpower needs

Uggah is seen discussing with a Civil Defence officer, Major Ismail Mahadir who is attached with SDMC secretariat, before the press conference at the Old DUN in Kuching today, in the presence of SDMC advisor Datuk Seri Dr Sim Ki Hian (right).

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By Peter Sibon

KUCHING, Feb 19: The State Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) has recommended that by March this year, illegal immigrants (PATI) who have been caught by the enforcement agencies will be recruited for manpower needs for various industries in the country, said SDMC chairman Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas.

“That’s why SDMC decided to recommend to the government that by March we should allow foreign workers to come into Sarawak. And we hoped that by allowing the illegal foreign workers in, then we hope this curi-curi (coming in illegally) will be minimised.

“By having foreign workers then we will be able to get them tested and they become healthy and at the same time, there is a program by the federal government recalibrating those who are in the immigration depot to be recruited so that they can go to the market to provide manpower requirement for the country,” Uggah told a press conference at the Old DUN Complex here today.

He asserted that it has been very challenging for the security forces to man the porous border with so many illegal routes known as jalan tikus (illegal routes)

“We always review the situation. Before we have ‘Ops Banteng’, then we have ‘Ops Sapu’ by the Immigration Department but it seemed not sufficient.

“That why we implement ‘Ops Jala’. It serves as a net to catch the PATI who is on the loose. But the jalan tikus are still tembus (penetrable), luckily they were nabbed at Betong from Badau (Kalimantan) and there is another area near Sri Aman (where they can come in). They are smarter than our security forces,” said Uggah. -DayakDaily