SERVING SENTENCES IN MALAYSIA: Programme to start next month
KAJANG: MALAYSIA will implement the International Transfer of Prisoners programme with Thailand next month.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said the programme would bring prisoners of this country and foreign prisoners closer to their families and home country.
"We will sign an agreement with Thailand soon," he said after launching the 1Malaysia Meeting with prisoners and their families in conjunction with Chinese New Year at Kajang Prison here yesterday.
He said the programme would allow Malaysian prisoners to serve their sentences in the country, while foreign prisoners could do so in theirs.
The programme was approved by Parliament in November last year and will be gazetted next month.
"A delegation from Malaysia visited Thailand to view the transfer implementation mechanism."
He said 2,622 Malaysians were serving jail sentences abroad, including 1,218 in Singapore, Thailand (404), China (231), Taiwan (137), Indonesia (146) and 486 in 54 other countries.
There are 1,758 foreigners in Malaysian prisons, of which 930 are Indonesians, Filipinos (403), Myanmar (111), Thais (82), Vietnamese (56) and 176 from 26 other countries.
He added that Malaysia also planned to extend the programme to South Korea, India, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Philippines, Iran and Venezuela.
Hishammuddin said seven prisoners were granted "leave" for seven days to enable them to turn over a new leaf with the participation of their families.
Through the initiative, eligible prisoners are allowed to be with their families to resurrect their future, like attending the Chinese New Year festival, looking for jobs, getting counselling and establishing better relationships with families.
One of the conditions is that the prisoner must have only a year remaining to serve in prison. Bernama