April 15, 2021

Jeffrey Kitingan: Sarawakians' worry over relaxed immigration rules for Sabah is understandable

2 min read

KOTA KINABALU: State opposition chief Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan (pic) understands concerns by some quarters in Sarawak over the proposal to relax the immigration conditions for Sabahans.

The Sabah Star president said due to Sabah’s long standing and still unresolved dubious citizenship and illegal immigrant problems, he shared their concerns and understood their worry.

“For me, if I were a Sarawakian, I would also be cautious especially when it comes to immigration issues,” he said.

He was responding to Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB) and Sarawak United Peoples Party (SUPP)’s strong objections to any move to relax the state’s immigration laws for Sabahans.

This came after news reports quoting Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg saying that the state government could reconsider its stringent immigration requirements for Sabahans following a work visit to Sabah recently.

Dr Jeffrey said Sabah had a duty to look into its immigration issues and solve the problem.

“I am sure Sarawak does not want to see a shift of population comprising foreigners and illegal immigrants into their state – a problem we have here in Sabah,” he said.

Opposition Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) president Datuk Yong Teck Lee said Sarawak had the right to do whatever it wanted with their immigration laws.

Sabahans entering Sarawak must provide their identification cards (MyKad) upon reaching the immigration checkpoint and will be issued an entry slip stating their details and purpose of entry among other information.

The visitor must have the slip with them at all times and must present it back to the immigration checkpoint upon departing Sarawak within 90 days of arrival.

There are other travel documents required for different purposes, depending on what the visitor is in Sarawak for.

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