Jeffrey to head special committee on foreign workers

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah government has agreed to appoint Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Jeffrey Kitingan as chairman of the newly formed Special Committee on Undocumented Foreign Workers and Foreign Nationals in Sabah.

The committee has been tasked to collect input from law enforcement, industry players, political leaders and community leaders on how to best address the issue of undocumented foreign workers and their dependents in Sabah.

“Both the Sabah and federal governments agree that illegal immigrants must be charged and deported immediately.

“We are currently inundated with the presence of illegal immigrants who have taken up jobs that our citizens do not want.

“They have slipped under our radar. We have no idea where they are, who they are, or what they up to. If we are not informed of their activities, we are exposing our citizens to security threats as well as health hazards,” said Kitingan in a statement here today.

Kitingan said as the chairman of the committee, he will convene meetings with heads of law enforcement forces, employers who hire foreign workers and political leaders from both side of the political divide and community leaders, in that order.

After these series of meetings are completed and the data has been gathered, his committee will present a paper to the cabinet to be discussed further and hopefully, solutions to the problem will be found.

“I believe we will be able to find the best solutions to this situation after extensive discussions with all the relevant stakeholders. I have set a deadline to present this cabinet paper in three months from today. I hope the outcome will be acceptable to everyone, especially Sabahans,” he said.

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