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Provide Records of Esscom Detainees and Prevent Past Illegalities

Kota Kinabalu:     “While the on-going operations to weed out illegal immigrants are welcomed and lauded, good governance and stringent action needs to be taken to prevent recurrence of Project IC and the dubious issuance of Malaysian ICs to ineligible foreigners and registration as illegal voters” commented Datuk Dr. Jeffrey Kitingan, STAR Sabah Chief, and Bingkor Assemblyman on the arrests of immigration officers and separate attempts by Pakistanis being charged to bribe Immigration officers and swoops to weed out illegals.

The current system of federal departments and federal control of Sabah’s immigration and registration of Sabahans and their handling of the detained illegal immigrants cannot be trusted and cannot be allowed to continue.

“That rogue immigration officers are prepared to be bribed to give long-stay social passes only reflect the mindset that they have of their masters in Putrajaya – that there is little or no concern for Sabah” opined Dr. Jeffrey.

“That the large number of Pakistani visitors to Sabah which are found all over Sabah even in remote villages, many of whom cannot even speak any local language, only show the scale of the problem” added Dr. Jeffrey.

Then there is the large numbers of Indonesians, many with ICs outnumbering even locals in many areas which are not only worrying but frightening. 

One ponders “What is going to be the fate of original Sabahans and the future of Sabah where the local natives were once the majority but now reduce to less than 20% of the population?”

In the RCI Report, it is proven conclusively that ICs were given dubiously not according to the law by the federal government itself and that ineligible foreigners were entered into the electoral rolls.

The numerous arrests of illegal immigrants almost on a daily basis is only the tip of the ice-berg of the humongous scale of the problems in Sabah.

Given the poor past records and lack of integrity of the Immigration and Registration Departments and the Election Commission, “what is there to prevent those illegal immigrants being arrested re-appearing as freshly imported Malaysians with new ICs and new Malay names and entered into the electoral rolls as well?”

The newly named “Technical Committee of Foreign Migrant Management” headed by Tan Sri Pairin needs to cover every possible angle to prevent past abuses and illegalities from being repeated.   Otherwise, it will be a futile exercise to get rid of illegal immigrants which instead becomes a fertile exercise to increase imported Sabahans as Umno members and BN voters, a new fixed deposit for the Barisan Nasional.

Preventive measures need to be implemented immediately by the Technical Committee to protect the sovereignty of Sabah and the rights and future of Sabahans.

For a start, Esscom and all the arresting agencies should ensure that records of the detainees complete with biometric data should be made available to the Technical Committee and the Technical Committee be allowed to document all the detainees independently.   It should not be done solely, secretly and discreetly by the federal authorities.

To ensure transparency and ensure integrity, the Technical Committee should have oversight and monitoring teams that are bipartisan and neutral to prevent abuses by the federal authorities and recurrence of past illegalities.

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