PETALING JAYA: Recruitment agencies in Bangladesh have welcomed the government’s move to suspend the “monopoly” by 10 companies said to be operated by a syndicate hiring migrant workers for Malaysia.
A media source in Bangladesh said the social and online media in the country was abuzz with news on the issue.
He said other recruitment agents in Bangladesh were fully supportive of the Malaysian Government’s move to end to the domination of the 10 companies.
“We want the Datuk Seri, who is the mastermind of the syndicate, and his cronies to be removed from the process so that the other 1,500 recruitment agents in Bangladesh will get a chance to recruit workers too.
“The 10 so-called authorised companies killed the rice bowl of the rest of the agents,’’ he said when contacted yesterday.
The Star reported yesterday that Malaysia had suspended the system currently being used for the recruitment of workers from Bangladesh.
Human Resources Minister M. Kulasegaran said the suspension would last until a full investigation was completed into allegations that a syndicate was operating a human trafficking racket to exploit the workers.
The report stated that a human trafficking syndicate, spearheaded by a Bangladeshi businessman with alleged political connections with the Home Ministry, raked in at least RM2bil in just two years from Bangladeshi workers looking to land jobs in Malaysia.
An investigation revealed that the workers paid RM20,000 each to their local agents who then paid half of the sum to the syndicate to facilitate work permit approvals and flight tickets to Malaysia.
The report stated that due to his strong political influence in Malaysia and Bangladesh, the businessman was instrumental in getting the two countries to sign a government-to-government agreement in 2016, giving only 10 companies from Bangladesh the right to recruit migrant workers for Malaysia.
It is learned that since late 2016, more than 100,000 Bangladeshi workers were brought into the country under the system, while more than 100,000 are waiting for their turn.
A Bangladesh recruitment agent based here said yesterday that the removal of the 10 companies must be done immediately.
“The workers will only be required to pay less than RM10,000 each if the 10 companies are no longer involved.
“Currently, half the money paid by the workers to their agents in Bangladesh goes to the 10 companies because only they can bring in workers to Malaysia,” the agent said.
Families in Bangladesh sold farms and borrowed money to raise RM20K workers fee