KUALA LUMPUR, June 24 (Bernama) — The Dewan Negara was Wednesday told that the government has no plan to allow Rohingya migrants registered with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to work in the country.
Deputy Human Resource Minister Datuk Ismail Abd Muttalib said it was feared that this would bring about an uncontrolled influx of illegal immigrants holding the UNHCR card into Malaysia.
“If we allow it, there will be manipulation of UNHCR refugees with the influx of more Rohingya migrants waiting at the border to enter the country. If we allow them to work, they will start demanding other needs, such as educational and medical facilities.
“We understand and empathise with them. As human beings, our responsibility is to help, but not by giving jobs,” he said in response to a question from Senator Datuk Yoo Wei How on whether the government would allow Rohingya migrants with UNHCR status to work in the country.
Referring to the Immigration Act, Ismail said Malaysian employers were not allowed to employ foreigners without valid travel documents.
He said that though all workers were protected under the Employment Act, those who wanted to seek remedy under the law had to be employed legally.
Meanwhile, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said a total of 1,303,126 illegal immigrants had been rounded up under the Comprehensive Settlement Programme for Illegal Immigrants (6P Programme).
Of the number, he said, 503,161 were legalised to meet the needs of industries.
He said that under the 6P programme, the government collected RM629,065,191 in revenue from levy payment for the first year based on the period of employment allowed under the programme.
Wan Junaidi was responding to a question from Senator Chong Sin Woon who wanted to know the success of the 6P programme.