(4 February 2002)

KOTA KINABALU: The recent operation to demolish squatter settlements at Pulau Gaya and to send back illegal immigrants to their homeland had failed, Gaya MP Datuk Yong Teck Lee claimed yesterday.

He said the State government had not considered factors concerning relocation site, temporary detention site, logistics and the process to deport the foreigners before carrying out the so-called massive operation.

It is vital to have a proper relocation site for the locals, he said. Temporary detention centre to house huge number of people at one time is also necessary before sending them back.

He also said the red tape that hampered the speedy deportation of Filipinos had to be addressed first because the Philippines seems unwilling to take back their people.

He pointed out that the Philippines' decision to accept only Filipinos with proper documents had made the deportation process in chaos because most Filipinos in Sabah have no documents.

Yong who is also Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) president was speaking to the media at Gaya Street, here, yesterday.

He said the State government's plan to shift locals squatting at Pulau Gaya to Kampung Boronoun in Telipok, near here, is also a lose-lose situation because of objections.

Yong said the village head and Boronuon folk objected to the idea of having people from other areas settling down there.

He also said that Pulau Gaya folk might not be able to adjust their lifestyle in the mainland.

The recent operation under the leadership of the Federal Special Task Force (FSTF) had demolished 24 houses at Kampung Pondo in Pulau Gaya and more than 100 foreigners were nabbed in the

Datuk Yong Teck Lee
Memberof Parliament for P150 Gaya / State Assemblyman for N13 Likas






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