PUTRAJAYA: A total of 11,943 illegal immigrants have been repatriated to their respective countries of origin through the Immigration Department’s (JIM) Migrant Repatriation programme, said Immigration director-general Datuk Ruslin Jusoh (pix).

Speaking at a press conference here today, Ruslin said all the illegal immigrants had completed the documentation process and payment of the compound by their respective embassies.

He said all these individuals were from the 16,824 illegal immigrants who registered with the Migrant Repatriation programme as of yesterday.

He said of the number registered, 12,495 were men, 3,728 were women, 310 were boys and 291 were girls.

“Indonesia recorded the highest number of illegal immigrants registered with the programme, with 7,782 people, followed by Bangladesh (2,530), India (2,454) and Pakistan (1,617),“ he said.

On case of 94 Bangladeshi nationals being cheated by their employer, Ruslin said all of them have been handed over to the employer involved for job placement and temporary work visit pass application (PLKS) matters.

“We did not detain these workers, many media parties did not get precise information. We (JIM) took them to shelters because they ddi not commit any offence under the Immigration Act.

“Some of them have documents, some haven’t got a pass yet and are in the process of getting one,“ he said.

On February 27, the media reported that the authorities rescued 94 Bangladeshi workers who were reportedly abandoned without being provided with suitable jobs and accommodation by employer since they were brought into the country in November 2023 by a construction company in Cheras, Selangor.

In the meantime, Ruslin reminded employers not to hold their employees’ passports in order to avoid any difficulties if the authorities conduct an inspection on the employees while they are outside the work premises.

“The employer cannot actually hold the document (passport) of the employee, because every time we check, we find that among the foreign workers, he does not have the document (with them) while the document is there but held by the employer. (Passports) should be held by them (employees),“ he said. -Bernama