Saturday, October 21, 2006

24 deportees from Malaysia return to W. Kalimantan

Pontianak, West Kalimantan (ANTARA News) - A total of 24 Indonesian migrant workers and a three-month old baby are returning to West Kalimantan province after being unattended for one year in Jakarta following their deportation from Malaysia for administrative violations, a labour activist has said.

The workers are now on their trip by sea from Jakarta, Coordinator for the Advocation and Case Handling of the Indonesian Migrant Workers Association (SBMI), Lily Pujiati, said when contacted from Pontianak, capital of West Kalimantan province, on Friday.

The Indonesian migrant workers experienced the case in Malaysia between 2004 and 2005, Lily said, adding that among them were the victims of fraud and human trafficking.

"They were once detained in Malaysia for two to eight months," she said.

Following their deportation from Malaysia, the migrant workers were accommodated by the Jakarta Social Affairs Office.

According to Lily, SBMI once contacted the West Kalimantan provincial administration but received no response so that the 24 deportees continued to stay at the Jakarta Social Affairs Office.

"During their stay in Jakarta from January to September, their accommodations were borne by the Jakarta Social Affairs Office," he said.

A member of the West Kalimantan provincial legislative council (DPRD), Katarina Lies, said based on the information she received, the migrant workers hailed from Pontianak and a number of districts bordering Malaysia.

"The migrant workers were deported mainly for administrative violations which led to crimes," Lies said.

In response, she said all the relevant institutions were expected to make coordination to prevent new problems upon their arrival in the province.

"The relevant government institutions should also increase their awareness of problematic migrant workers hailing from West Kalimantan," she said.

West Kalimantan is one of the Indonesian provinces which send a great number of migrant workers to Malaysia both legally and illegally as the province share common borders with the eastern Malaysian state of Serawak. (*)



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