KUALA LUMPUR, 9 July 2019:
The Malaysian Immigration Department has allocated RM139 million a year as its operations management cost – including for maintenance and preparation of meals for detainees at 14 detention depots nationwide.
Director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said of the total, RM80 million was for the preparation of meals for the detainees – which is done according to diet plans recommended by the Ministry of Health.
“The quality of the meals for the detainees is constantly checked to ensure that they are in good condition and that the daily meal samples will be labelled and stored for three days for monitoring purposes.
“If the quality of the meals is bad, there would have been a case of food poisoning, but there wasn’t, and this shows that all meals prepared for the detainees have met the required standards,” he told a press conference at the Bukit Jalil Immigration Detention Depot here yesterday.
He said this in response to the recent report alleging the Immigration Department had badly treated a group of Filipino detainees at the depot and provided them with stale and unhygienic food.
Khairul Dzaimee also denied the allegation that the Immigration personnel at the depot had confiscated personal items belonging to the detainees because each item would be recorded according to the standard operating procedure (SOP).
“The Immigration Department has a record system and SOP which must be adhered to and all personal possessions will be returned to the detainees upon their release,” he said, adding that the department had not received any official complaint from the Philippine government regarding the alleged ill-treatment of Filipino detainees at the depot.
Last Friday, a non-governmental organisation was reported to have claimed a group of refugees from the Philippines were treated ‘like animals’ while being detained at the Bukit Jalil Immigration Depot, and nearly all their possessions were confiscated by the Immigration authorities.