Malaysia to Offer Amnesty to Illegal Workers

Posted June 6th, 2011 at 9:45 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

A senior Malaysian official says the government will offer amnesty to some of the country's estimated two million illegal immigrants in an effort to reduce the illegal workforce and curb exploitation by traffickers.

Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said Monday that the government would launch a program to grant illegal workers permits to stay in the country and work legally. They will not be granted Malaysian citizenship.

The home minister said the program would start in July and that the immigrants would have three weeks to accept the government's offer. He did not clarify which workers would be eligible to stay in the country and under what terms.

The program is named “6P” after six Malay words for registration, legalization, amnesty, supervision, enforcement and deportation.

Malaysia has a large number of foreign workers, especially from the neighboring southeast Asian countries. Those who stay in the country illegally often work long hours, performing low-paid menial jobs shunned by the domestic labor.