THE Immigration Department has no knowledge of illegal foreign workers in Kampung Giching, Salak, here being tipped off about raids.

Immigration Department chief of enforcement, investigation and prosecution Saravana Kumar said it had not received any report on the matter, but said stern action would be taken against errant staff.

“The Immigration Department has been conducting raids regularly to nab illegals, especially under the recent nationwide campaign, Hari Hari Operasi, which is known to the public.

“Illegal foreign workers often hide themselves to avoid being arrested during such raids.

“However, the raids conducted by the department have always been successful.”

Saravana was commenting on a complaint by villagers of
Kampung Giching that they noticed illegal immigrants hid in nearby forests hours before the raids.

Villager Mohd Faizul Mohd Zin, 33, said the authorities needed to investigate the issue as it had affected the credibility of the Immigration Department and government agencies.

“When we see many illegal immigrants shopping for groceries suddenly disappear, we know most likely there will be raids by the Immigration Department that day.

“It appears that someone is alerting them before the raid. Whoever that person is, he could be paid well by the illegal immigrants,” he said.

Faizul added that the illegal immigrants were sometimes forced to hide in the nearby forests for a couple of days following an Immigration raid.

Another villager, who only wanted to be known as Adam, urged the authorities to investigate and take action against villagers who harboured illegal immigrants.

“There are about 500 locals in the village, while the number of foreign workers has reached nearly 200.

“Most of the foreign workers rent houses built and owned by locals. The authorities should act against villagers who rent out their homes to illegal immigrants.

“We do not want our village to turn into a safe haven for illegals,” he said.

Adam added that most illegal immigrants worked in nearby factories and farms, while some sold drinks and snacks on motorcycles.

Some villagers rent their homes to illegal immigrants in Kampung Giching, Salak in Sepang. Pix by Mohd Yusni Ariffin