156 foreign workers detained in hostel raid

Hasnoor Hussain Nazir Sufari

ONE hundred and fifty-six migrant workers at a hostel in Cyberjaya were detained last night in a raid conducted by the Immigration Department during checks on undocumented foreign workers.

The detainees are currently being held at the Semenyih Immigration detention centre.

The raid follows Hamzah Zainuddin’s recent announcement that undocumented migrants would be targeted during the 14-day lockdown period.

This had led to critics to slam the home minister for ordering such an operation, which could derail the nation’s Covid-19 herd immunity plans under the national Covid-19 vaccination programme.

It was learnt that the majority of the detainees were working as construction workers at a nearby construction site.

“The area is being developed. There will be a few residential towers as well as a university once construction is completed,” an Immigration Department officer said.

Checks revealed that the workers’ hostel was not far from the Cyberjaya Flagship Development Zone.

Earlier, Immigration Department Director-General Khairul Dzaimee Daud said 202 foreign labourers were screened and only 46 of them were released. The rest were detained for not having valid documentation.

“There are 144 male foreign workers and 12 women. A total of 42 of them are Indonesians, 62 Bangladeshis, 20 Nepalis, 29 Myanmar nationals, and a man each from Pakistan and India,” he said.

Those detained were taken to a Covid-19 screening centre before they were sent to the detention camp in Semenyih.

The Immigration Department will be contacting the respective embassies before the detainees are deported. – June 7, 2021.

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