Tougher enforcement needed for those abusing immigration laws
0 month ago, 04-Dec-2019
Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah
KUCHING: Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah is urging Putrajaya to take sterner action against foreigners violating the countrys immigration laws.
This was in view of the Auditor-Generals (AG) Report 2018 stating that there was no record of exit dates for more than 95 per cent of Chinese and Indian tourists who visited the country between 2016 and 2018.
On issues like this, the Immigration Department should be more strict. I agree that actions must be taken because the numbers are quite high. This is clearly very bad.
“We dont know what is happening, either they exit without the immigration knowing, or they decided to stay here, he told reporters at the Pandelela Aquatic Centre today.
Abdul Karim said if no actions were taken, things could get out of control, and more foreigners would end up abusing the Malaysian immigration system.
Just catch a few of them and bring them to justice. That should set an example for the rest, and the rest would be afraid to violate our immigration law, he said.
Fortunately, Karim said Sarawak does not suffer from serious immigration and illegal immigrant issues, unlike Sabah.
Our autonomous immigration control has been very successful, he said.
According to the AG report, for the year 2016 to 2018, it was found that out of the 79,799 Chinese tourist arrivals through the Malaysian Immigration System (MyIMMs), a total of 76,258 or 95.6 per cent have no records of exit dates.
As for Indian nationals, the report stated that out of the 41,243 arrivals between 2017 and 2018, it was found that 39,806 or 96.5 per cent have no record of exit dates.
The audit also found that the data of some 1.26 million Chinese nationals and 295,634 Indian nationals were still being processed manually under the new integrated Malaysian Immigration System (MyIMMs) MyIMMs.
Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin yesterday said he had referred the matter to the Malaysian Immigration Department to be scrutinised.
Some things can be explained . What is important is when tourists do not go back and overstay, the Immigration will want to know where they are.
Immigration enforcement action will be taken against them, we want to make sure that when a person is in the country, it must be within the period approved by the Immigration Department, he told reporters after the official handing over of the Bukit Kayu Hitam Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security Complex to his ministry in Kedah yesterday.