Home Ministry To Move Children Out Of Immigration Detention Centers

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Home Minister Saifuddin Nasution (pic) reminded political parties not to touch on 3R issues during the upcoming state polls. -- Bernama pic

PUTRAJAYA ― The Home Ministry (KDN) will shift the children detained at the Immigration Detention Depot soon and place them under the care of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) that specifically specialise in the welfare of children.

Home Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said he has already identified the profile of the children, their numbers and where they were detained.

“Very soon, I will bring them out. I have been dealing with NGOs that are involved in providing welfare services to children,” he told reporters after attending a session with media members, here on Wednesday (Feb 15).

Speaking of a Bangladeshi child found in a container at West Port, Port Klang on Jan 17, Saifuddin said the kid would be sent home next week.

The eight-year-old from Chittagong, Bangladesh had accidentally wondered into a container and was locked inside the container for six days before being spotted by Malaysian authorities and given treatment at the Tuanku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital in Klang and currently under the care of an NGO.

“KDN has managed to locate the kid’s family and I have informed my counterpart in Bangladesh that the kid will be sent back. All the documentation process at the Embassy has also been done,” he said.

Asked about Malaysia’s ranking in Tier 3, of the Trafficking in Persons Report released by the US State Department (US Tip Report) 2021, apparently for not fully meeting the minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking and not making significant efforts to do so, Saifuddin said he had already contacted the US Embassy to explain the steps and initiatives taken by Malaysia.

The government had amended the anti-trafficking law and Employment Act to include a more detailed definition of forced labour.

“There was an opportunity to engage with the US Ambassador and I explained the initiatives Malaysia has taken because it involves a number of elements that are very clear, like detention, investigation and prosecution.

“Therefore, our efforts to overcome human trafficking is measured through the three components. We give serious attention because the position has disadvantages to the country, especially when products from our country are barred from entering the US,” he said.

According to Saifuddin, recently Sime Darby Plantation which was barred by the US from sending palm oil products, over allegations that the company had used forced labour, has been cleared but two other companies are still facing sanctions from the US. ― Bernama