The Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur advised Filipinos working and residing there to comply with immigration requirements and to always carry their identification documents with them amid the Malaysian government’s crackdown on illegally staying foreign nationals.
In a statement, Philippine Ambassador to Kuala Lumpur Eduardo Malaya revealed that the Malaysian government started a crackdown on September 1 against undocumented foreign workers there. The mission involved personnel from different government agencies.
So far, they have apprehended 2,433 undocumented foreign nationals, most of these were Indonesians (717), Myanmar nationals (555), Bangladeshi (387) and Nepali (229).
“We wish to remind our Filipino nationals to have proper documents, notably work permit or passport with valid visa, and carry it with them in case of immigration checks, in order to avoid inconvenience. Also, Filipinos who wish to enter Malaysia for work should have approved work permits or similar papers as they start their jobs here,” Malaya said in the statement.
This call was made during his visit to Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock and other places frequently visited by Filipinos in Kuala Lumpur. The envoy was with Consul General Medardo Macaraig.
Macaraig noted that they have already checked the immigration detention facility in Putrajaya and were informed that Filipinos were not among those arrested and held in the facility.
On Monday this week, Malaya met with Minister for Home Affairs Dato’ Sri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to exchange views on the concerns of Filipinos in Malaysia, which included the access of Filipino children to public schools.
Aside from the conditions of Filipinos working and residing in Kuala Lumpur, the ambassador also requested for the humane treatment of Filipinos who may be apprehended in light of the crackdown against illegally staying foreign workers there.
Malaya ensured as well that Filipinos in Sabah, which areas have been the sites of intense clashes between Malaysian forces and the supporters of self-proclaimed Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram 3rd in February and March this year, will receive consular assistance with regards to applying for and renewing passports and authenticating birth documentations.
The envoy said the embassy already deployed a twice-a-month consular mobile team of six to seven personnel for a two-week stay in Sabah.
The consular missions have visited Kota Kinabalu, Lahad Datu, Semporna, Tawau, Kudat, Keningau, Kota Marudu, Sandakan and other areas.
An embassy consular mission is scheduled to visit Labuan, Miri and Bintulu in Sarawak to provide consular services to Filipino nationals there. BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON