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Monday, July 26, 2010

No new refugees since ’84, says Sabah’s Musa


The Sabah government has denied that it has been secretly giving refugee status to illegal immigrants.

Responding to an allegation by Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), Chief Minister Musa Aman said the state now issued IMM13 documents only to the children of those who became refugees before 1984.

The IMM13 is a document issued by the Immigration Department. It gives refugee status to a person who holds it.

No Filipino who arrived in Sabah after 1984 had been given refugee status, Musa said at a press conference here today.

Musa, who chairs the State Security Committee, also said that the government, aware of the political sensitivity of the issue, strictly monitored the granting of refugee status to the children of refugees.

Eighty-four thousand refugees in Sabah currently held IMM13 documents, he added.

PBS information chief Johnny Mositun, who is also deputy speaker of the state assembly, said recently that he had received reports of illegal immigrants being given the IMM13 documents.

Musa said his administration had not detected any abuse in the issuing of IMM13 to children of refugees.

“The state government is careful about matters related to IMM13 refugees and illegal immigrants,” he said. “We know this is a sensitive issue.”

He said he had made it clear to the State Security Committee that operations against illegal immigration must be held regularly.

courtesy of FMT

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