Immigration to go after undocumented migrants during lockdown

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The immigration department (JIM) will be conducting operations to detain undocumented migrants during the two-week lockdown, home minister Hamzah Zainudin said today.

In a press conference, he said JIM will be holding these operations with the National Registration Department (NRD) and police, adding that the Prisons Department is ready to allocate additional detention centres for those who might get arrested.

“It’s true that last time our prisons had reached beyond their capacity. But now we’re ready. We have satellite prisons and detention centres prepared.

“It has already been a year after the various SOPs and phases of movement control orders (MCOs).


“If still there are people who are stubborn, I mean foreigners, we will detain them,” he said.

Hamzah said 55,000 police personnel will be mobilised for the lockdown, an increase of 18,000 from the current 37,000 deployed, with their leave frozen for the two-week period.

With an additional 15,000 personnel from various agencies under the home ministry, there will be a total of 70,000 enforcement officers deployed during the two weeks.

He also said more than 800 roadblocks will be set up across the country for the lockdown, compared to the nearly 600 already put in place.

“Surprise checks will also be conducted, with the cooperation of government ministries and agencies as well as local authorities, to ensure SOP compliance in the social and economic sectors.”

He warned repeat offenders who remained stubborn that they would be brought to court if they continued to flout SOPs, adding that the court will then decide on their punishment.

When asked if the police would still issue permits for interstate travel, he said they will wait for the National Security Council (MKN) to announce the list of sectors deemed essential. – FMT