PETALING JAYA, July 22 (Sin Chew Daily) — Large numbers of Illegal migrants miss their flights as they are waiting to settle the RM500 compound notices to leave the country under the repatriation calibration program.
Immigration Department Director-General Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said the illegal workers were not told to gather or get stranded at the airport but large numbers of foreign workers at the KL International Airport exceeded the capacity of the airport's waiting area.
Khairul Dzaimee said this in response to news reports that the program's time-consuming procedures had led to many being stranded at the airport after missing their flights.
He said 101,691 illegal migrant workers had applied for the repatriation calibration program as of Tuesday, 83,117 of whom had since left Malaysia.
"The special counter set up for the program at KLIA handled a total of 3,483 applications between July 5 and 20," he added.
The immigration authorities also discovered that some illegal migrants remained at the airport area to wait for the next available flights after missing their theirs.
"The department is taking immediate measures to negotiate with the airport management to add more counters and waiting areas," he said.
The immigration department would be adding 20 special counters and new waiting areas to accommodate up to 1,000 people at the temporary parking area of KLIA, he said.
Another eight special counters and waiting area would be created at KLIA2 and they would be set up next week to accommodate some 500 people at one time, he said.
Khairul Dzaimee also said the department planned to set up a special counter at the customs checkpoint in Johor for Indonesian workers who leave Malaysia by ferry.
He said the special counter would only handle migrant workers who test negative for COVID-19.