N. Koreans working in S’wak legally


Piles of coal at the mine in Selantik, Pantu, about 130km from Kuching.

MIRI: Disciplined, dedicated and tough - that is why North Koreans are hired to work in Sarawak’s coal mines.

Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar said the North Koreans were brought into Sarawak to work via a special arrangement between the Sarawak and North Korean governments.

“Only Sarawak has North Korean workers (in Malaysia). This is not (allowed) in the peninsular,’’ he said when commenting on the presence of dozens of North Koreans at a coal mine in the Sri Aman division.

Besides the 46 North Koreans, the mine’s 119 foreign workers were from Myanmar (29), Indonesia (19) China (15) and Bangladesh (10).

Wan Junaidi, who is the Santubong MP, said it was the right of Sarawak to hire the North Koreans because “the state government has autonomy on immigration and labour matters.”

“When it comes to industries such as coal-mines, the jobs are very dangerous and tough. The mines can extend hundreds of metres below.

“No local or Sarawakian will dare to take up such jobs; that is why the need for foreign workers. In the coal-mining sector, only Britain, China and North Korea have highly-skilled workers,’’ Wan Junaidi pointed out.

Backing Sarawak’s decision to hire the North Koreans, he said there was no record of crimes involving them in the state.

On Saturday’s explosion at the mine, Wan Junaidi said checks showed that all the foreign workers had valid work permits.

“The entry of these workers were handled by the Malaysian Immigration Department and their work permits were issued by the Sarawak Labour Department,” he added.

Wan Junaidi said the Malaysian Government had no issue with nationalities from different ideologies working in the country as long as they “have working permits, do their jobs and not spread their ideology”.

“There are many people from communist countries working in our country and having businesses here,” he said. “All we require is that they come here legally, work legally and stay free of trouble with our laws.”

Related story:

It’s like entering a grave, says rescuer

Number of injured workers rises to 30

Mine sealed due to gas and flood

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3

Courts & Crime , coal

   

Did you find this article insightful?

Yes
No

Next In Nation

Top Glove is biggest contributor of cases in a single day, says Ismail Sabri
Disciplinary action taken against 6,000 cops for various misconducts since 2016, says Bukit Aman
Ismail Sabri: Mandatory screening required for all 1.7 million foreign workers in Malaysia
Ismail Sabri: Enhanced MCO to be enforced in two areas in Kulim and Tuaran on Friday (Nov 27)
QS Rankings: UM in Asia's top 10, other universities did well too
Penang govt still waiting for lab test results on oil spill incident at Paramount fishing area
Covid-19: Five new clusters, four new deaths
Covid-19: 970 new cases, four fatalities
Covid-19: Cases up by 970, bringing total to 59,817 (updated daily)
Teen rescued after jumping off bridge near KK

Stories You'll Enjoy