Sunday, October 5, 2008


Police didn’t abuse Filipino detainees: Sukarti


The State Government has denied reports that illegal Filipino workers deported from the State were abused by the Police. State Secretary Datuk Sukarti Wakiman said there is no ounce of truth to the allegation which was reported by foreign news wire AFP. “We have not received any negative reports as to how we treated the illegal immigrants prior to their deportation,” Sukarti, who is also the Ops Bersepadu Operation Director, said. He was commenting on an AFP report about a fact-finding body in the Philippines alleging that illegal Filipinos expelled from Sabah have been severely beaten by Police. According to a member of the Fact-Finding Committee on Sabah Deportees, Luzviminda Ilagan, Filipino detainees and those already deported to the Philippines have experienced severe beatings from Malaysian Police while under detention. “Thousands of Filipinos, including women and children remained in Malaysian detention centres and suffering from inhumane conditions,” Ilagan who is also a member of the Philippines House of Representatives, told reporters in Zamboanga. She also pushed for a House-level inquiry into the alleged abuses by Malaysian Police. Sukarti stressed that the standing order in the operation to flush out illegal immigrants from the State is that all detainees or foreigners are screened according to set procedures including providing them with at least the minimum standard of their needs according to human rights. “So the report claiming that they were treated badly or abused by Malaysian authorities is not true,” he said, adding that so far no reports of such abuse or ill-treatment of detainees have been received since the operation was launched on August 1. Sukarti pointed out that any incident of detainees being ill-treated would have been detected at the beginning of the operation. To a question if the State Government would be conducting an investigation into the report, Sukarti said that there was no basis to do so. He however gave an assurance that an investigation would be carried out if they receive any reports of abuse or ill-treatment by the authorities.