Zaid (second left) launching the i-card for immigrant workers in Putrajaya on Thursday.
PUTRAJAYA: The Home Ministry will launch a large-scale operation to flush out illegal immigrants on Jan 21.
Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the exercise would involve the Immigration Department, police and People's Volunteer Corps (Rela).
It would begin a day after the special programme on the management of illegal immigrants ends on Jan 20, he told a news conference after launching the i-card for immigrant workers, here, on Thursday.
Deputy Home Minister Datuk Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar, Home Ministry
secretary-general Datuk Mohamad Khalid Shariff, Immigration Department
director-general Datuk Alias Ahmad and Inspector-General of Police Tan
Sri Khalid Abu Bakar were also present at the news conference.
Ahmad Zahid said the cost of deporting the illegal immigrants would be borne by the immigrants themselves, their employers or the missions of their countries.
"The government will not use public funds to deport the illegal immigrants. We have discussed this matter with the respective foreign missions," he said.
Ahmad Zahid said biometric fingerprint registration would be done for all the illegal immigrants before their deportation to ensure that they would not be able to return to Malaysia under a different name.
"The government will not compromise on the matter of foreigners living in Malaysia illegally, thus reducing the employment opportunities and depriving Malaysians of their right to earn a living," he said.
He also said there would be no more extension of the special programme on the management of illegal immigrants after the expiry date of Jan 20, and reminded employers to send in their applications within the next 10 days.