Cracking down on illegals

KOTA KINABALU: A seemingly innocuous act of hiring illegal immigrants or renting a house for them could undermine the nation’s security.

Issuing a stern warning against locals harbouring illegal immigrants in any way, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman said such individuals were being irresponsible.

He said Malaysian security forces had been tasked to track down illegal immigrants and those harbouring them including their employers and landlords.

“We want our towns to be dominated by locals and not foreigners who enter Sabah illegally,” Musa said when replying to a question from Datuk Syed Abas Syed Ali (BN-Balung).

In this regard, Musa said the Malaysian security forces operations tracking down illegal immigrants in the east coast districts had been proven to be effective.

Similarly, the dusk to dawn curfew in waters off six districts had also resulted in improved security at Sabah’s east coast.

“Our security forces are better able to prevent cross border criminal activities including smuggling and the entry of illegal immigrants with the curfew,” Musa added.

In another matter, Assistant Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Minister Datuk Sairin Karno said Sabah was set to become one of the nation’s largest prawn producers in five years.

Replying to a question from Dr Edwin Bosi (DAP-Kapayan), he said the state was projected to produce nearly 22 tonnes of the crustaceans yearly by 2020 from four major prawn farms that were currently being set up.

He said the prawn farms, costing a total RM1.12bil, were among the initiatives under the National Key Economic Area (NKEA) with the Federal government contributing some 30% of the initial investment.

Sairin said the biggest among the four would be Sunlight Inno Seafood Sdn Bhd that was expected to produce some 16,000 tonnes of prawns a year from its 2,200ha farm in the northern Pitas district.

The farm is a joint venture between Sunlight Farm Sdn Bhd and Inno Fisheries Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of the Sabah Foundation.

The other prawn farms are located in Kota Belud with a yearly production of 600 tonnes, Tawau (1,245 tonnes) and Kudat (1,300 tonnes).

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