400,000 undocumented Filipinos in Malaysia face immigration crackdownPosted on
DAVAO CITY (August 31)— An estimated 400,000 undocumented Filipinos in Malaysia are facing crackdown as the two-year Voluntary deportation Program ended yesterday August 30.
The Departmenf of Foreign Affairs in Malaysia sounded off Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano that only 5,844 Filipinos availed of amnesty since it was launched in January 2016 – a figure representing less than 1 percent of the estimated 400,000 undocumented Filipinos in Malaysia.
Ambassador to Malaysia Charles Jose in a statement to DFA Manila said “With Malaysia’s amnesty program ending today, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is advising Filipinos there to expect authorities to launch a nationwide immigration crackdown as early as tomorrow.”
The DFA issued the advisory after authorities in Kuala Lumpur announced that there would be no extension to the Voluntary Deportation Program that was launched in 2016.
The DFA issued a reminded to Filipinos in Malaysia, particular those without legal immigration status, that the amnesty program ended.
“In view of this, we request our kababayan to exercise due prudence and to ensure they carry their legal documents at all times,” Ambassador Jose said.
The envoy said that since the program was implemented two and a half years ago, the Embassy has been assisting Filipino applicants by issuing travel documents free of charge, paying exit fees and airfare assistance (as needed) as well as issuing endorsements and even providing transportation to the Immigration Office in Putrajaya.
Ambassador Jose said the Embassy has also issued several public advisories to explain the requirements and procedure for the program.
On the last month of the amnesty program, Ambassador Jose said the Embassy also facilitated the applications of undocumented Filipinos, such as allowing document applications by mail, adjusting the security vetting procedures.
The Embassy has also been issuing reminders on social media platforms and through the Filipino Community of the anticipated nationwide immigration crackdown beginning tomorrow.
Hundreds of undocumented Filipino enter Malaysia through the southern backdoor, they enter Sabah via Basilan, Sulu or Tawi-tawi.
The embassy, he added, issued reminders on social media platforms and through the Filipino community of the anticipated nationwide immigration crackdown on undocumented foreigners.
Manila has repeatedly urged illegally-staying Filipinos in Malaysia to voluntarily return to the Philippines, warning that those who will be caught will be kept in detention while undergoing deportation proceedings.
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Reports from Malaysia revealed that the crackdown has been set and anytime immigration personnel will implement the order.-ezc/NewsLine.ph