KUALA LUMPUR: The Immigration Department (Immigration) has denied allegations that the Immigration Depot in Lenggeng, Negeri Sembilan was overcrowded, and that three other depots were understaffed.
Immigration director-general Datuk Seri Khairul Dzaimee Daud (pic) said the total detention capacity at all 21 Immigration depots throughout Malaysia, including three temporary ones, was 21,150, while the total number of detainees at all the depots as of April 24 was about 17,000.
He said they comprised 12,895 men, 3,211 women, 851 boys and 677 girls, with all the children placed with their respective guardians.
"The total detention capacity at the Lenggeng Immigration Depot in Negeri Sembilan is 1,000 people, namely 800 men and 200 women.
"As of April 24 this year, the number of detainees at the Lenggeng Immigration Depot was 779 people comprising 583 men, 173 women, 15 boys and eight girls," he said in a statement on Tuesday (April 26).
Khairul Dzaimee said in terms of staffing, the department had reviewed its requirements at all depots in 2019, taking into account the actual number of officers required, and the matter had been agreed upon by the central agency including additional posts for four temporary detention centres (PTS) in Sabah, after they were taken over from the National Security Council.
He said Immigration was actively filling vacancies, including those at detention depots, on an ongoing basis.
He was responding to a local media report on Tuesday on a statement by the Office of the Children’s Commissioner at the Malaysian Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) Prof Datuk Noor Aziah Mohd Awal claiming that the Lenggeng Immigration Depot in Negeri Sembilan was overcrowded, while three other depots lacked staff.
Khairul Dzaimee said the department took the statement seriously which was deemed not based on facts and did not give a true picture of the current situation at Immigration depots throughout the country.
"In terms of managing the Immigration Depot, the Immigration always complies with the stipulations in the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (The Nelson Mandela Rules), the Immigration Act 1959/63 (Act 155), the Immigration Regulations 2003 (Administration and Management of Immigration Depots), The Immigration Director-General’s Standing Instructions on the Management and Administration of Immigration Depots and the ICRC's (International Committee of the Red Cross) guidelines for health aspects," he said. - Bernama