New Straits Times
EXTORTION. Bribery. Close one eye. These are just some of the allegations directed at Malaysian Immigration officials accused of extorting money from illegal immigrants.
Their Thai counterparts are alleged to ignore human trafficking at the borders.
Immigration director-general Datuk Mahmood Adam has dismissed as baseless the report that his officers are on the take.
He says Malaysian and Thai officials are keeping an eye on human trafficking along their common border.
"Our department is liaising with other enforcement agencies and we have put in place several measures, which I cannot divulge.
"Being a common border, it is an ongoing process to nab the culprits and bust the syndicates involved," he says, adding that several arrests have been made.
Mahmood says the situation is the same at the country's borders with Indonesia, Brunei and the Philippines, with enforcement agencies monitoring the situation.
"We conduct scheduled and unscheduled enforcement operations, even in towns and villages, from time to time to weed out the culprits."
Mahmood says his department has established a task force to look into the issue following allegations in a report by the US Senate foreign relations committee and by Klang member of parliament Charles Santiago as well as non-governmental organisations, including Tenaganita.
"We have been monitoring the situation over the last six months after earlier reports surfaced. But I can assure you that the reports are not true," he says, reiterating the negative findings by the Home and Foreign Ministries.
Asked if any of his officers are involved in bribes or extortion, Mahmood says so far none has been implicated.
"There is no inside job. Our procedures in deporting illegal immigrants are there.
"We repatriate them once we have established their countries of origin," he says, adding that the department could otherwise turn them over to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) for further action.
A report in the Bangkok Post recently says the allegations are too credible to ignore.
The report interviewed Myanmar immigrants of the Chin, Rohingya, Shan and Mon tribes allegedly fleeced and tortured by Myanmar, Thai and Malaysian enforcement officers, who received a bounty for each arrest.
Some claimed to have paid RM2,000 for safe passage to a third country.
Those who failed to pay were "sold" as slaves, sexually abused or placed in jungle camps.
Children were also not spared.
It was reported that as of January, there were 27,000 Myanmar refugees registered with the UNHCR in Kuala Lumpur, with 30,000 more waiting to be processed.
This Country is already suffocated with millions of immigrants.We can see them roaming freely in every corner of this nation and yet the Immigration Department failed to 'see' it. Not a surprise.
G.A.P.A di Malaysia 's statement is simple :
IMMIGRATION DEPARTMENT OF MALAYSIA IS A CORRUPTED AGENCY!!
THIS DEPARTMENT IS NOTHING THAN JUST A BUNCH OF TRAITORS!!..THE DIRECTOR GENERAL (pic) SHOULD BE PENALIZED FOR THE ACT OF TREASON!!