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Feb 1, 2008

Immigration summons bosses over Bangladeshi workers

The Star
Friday, 01 February 2008

PUTRAJAYA: The employers of 686 Bangladeshi workers now camping along Sungai Gombak have been asked by the Immigration Department to explain the situation.

The Bangladeshis had sought refuge at their High Commission in the last two weeks but there was no space at the high commission grounds.

They claimed that they were not paid salaries for up to six months or that there were no jobs for them. They said they have nowhere to go as their employers were holding their passports.

Immigration enforcement director Datuk Ishak Mohammad said the employers could be blacklisted from recruiting any foreign workers if they could not explain the situation.

“The chief executives of the 25 companies must see me within a week to give their side of the story,” he said at his office here yesterday.

Ishak warned errant employers that they could be prosecuted under the newly passed Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act, which carries heavier penalties, if allegations of torture by the Bangladeshis were true.

He said Bangladesh High Commissioner M. Khairuzzaman would look into moving the workers to a housing area in Kajang Perdana to resolve the problem.

“We will inform the police and Rela not to conduct any raid at these places.

“The High Commission will also be looking at other areas. We are willing to give them time to resolve the problem before we deport the workers,” he said.


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