Indonesia awaits Malaysia`s decision on deportation of illegal workers

Indonesia awaits Malaysia`s decision on deportation of illegal workers

Illustration / documentation. Indonesian Workers (TKI) deported by the Malaysian government marched at Tunon Taka International Port, Nunukan Regency, North Kalimantan. (ANTARA PHOTO/M.Rusman)

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian Government awaits Malaysia`s decision on deportation of its illegal migrant workers from the neighboring country, a top official of the Social Affairs Ministry said.

"We are still awaiting Malaysia`s decision on it. We hope it would be solved soon, so no more migrant workers would be deserted in Malaysia," Sonny W. Manalu stated here on Thursday.

Manalu, the ministry`s Director for Social Rehabilitation and Victims of Human Trafficking, remarked that Malaysia had faced the problem of overload at detention centers since the country stopped facilitating the deportation of illegal workers in 2017.

Illegal Indonesian migrant workers were detained in various cases, such as lack of immigration documents, crimes committed, and some of them were unpaid.

Manalu noted that some 17 thousand to 20 thousand illegal Indonesian workers were deported from Malaysia every year.

"Usually, they were accompanied (by Malaysian officials), and we pick them up at the two gates of Pontianak via the Indonesian Consulate General in Kuching and in Tanjung Pinang via the Consulate General in Johor Baru," he noted, adding that the ministry will later help them to return to their villages.

However, as of August, only 3,500 migrant workers had been deported from Malaysia.

"I have met with an immigration official in Malaysia saying that Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad will soon fix the problem. They promise to deport the workers, but we do not know when," he noted.

He has expressed hope for the Mahathir administration to reach an agreement with Indonesia regarding deportation of the migrant workers.

Reported by Desi Purnamawati
Edited by S022, Rahmad Nasution

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