PUTRAJAYA, July 4 — The Immigration Department will give priority to investigations involving foreign children effective today, said its Director-General Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud.
“If in the past (investigation) was according to the queue as operations were carried out daily. After this, if there are any detention involving children, we will immediately investigate without waiting for the queue and so on,” he said.
When met by the media after the Aidilfitri gathering organised by the Operations, Investigation and Prosecution Division and the Legal Advisor Division of the Immigration Department here today, he said there were 363 foreign children aged under 12 years who were being detained at the detention depots nationwide.
He said cordial relations between the Immigration Department and the embassy offices in Malaysia would speed up the process involving child detention, and as soon as the Detention and Eviction Order was issued by the Deputy Public Prosecutor, the detained children could be sent to their respective countries within seven days.
“As long as we cleared the travel document with the relevant embassies, they will be deported back to their respective countries as soon as possible,” said Khairul Dzaimee.
Commenting on the detention of two foreign children who were sent home to the Philippines yesterday, Khairul Dzaimee said the Immigration Department had managed the case according to the standard operating procedure specified.
“The whole process is still within the period specified where the remand period is two weeks and on the 14th day we have seven days to send them home,” he added.
Refuting the allegation that the Immigration (Department) had separated the children from their mother, he said their mother was not detained as they had valid documents but the one detained with the children was a minder who did not have the necessary documents.
Both the children of the Philippine national were detained during a raid by the Immigration Department at the Plaza Indah Apartment, Kajang on June 14. During the raid, the children who did not have necessary documents were left with a minder while their mother was not at home. — Bernama