Nazri Abdul Aziz dismissed Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim's call to expand the RCI's scope to encompass the whole country.
In a reply to Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz said the government is taking time to announce the terms of reference as they wanted to find a comprehensive solution to the illegal immigrants problem in Sabah.
“We are also looking into appointing commissioners who have expertise in dealing with such issues,” said Nazri.
On June 1, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak announced the formation of the RCI after much delay and said the government is committed to resolving the matter as it affects the lives of Sabahans.
“The Attorney-General’s Chambers has been entrusted with the responsibility to come up with the terms of reference and the initial draft has been prepared,” Najib reportedly said.
It was reported that the number of illegal immigrants in Sabah is estimated to be around 500,000 people.
At this juncture, Anwar stood up and asked whether the government would consider expanding the RCI’s purview to the whole country, claiming there was a surge of illegal immigrants in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Johor.
“The government should also investigate issues of corruption and allegations that illegal immigrants are registered as voters in our electoral roll,” said Anwar.
Kinabatangan MP Bung Mokhtar Radin also stood up and urged the government to resolve the stateless issue in Sabah first before commencing the RCI so that the inquiry would not victimise locals.
“There are quite a number of Sabahans who don’t have proper birth certificates and MyKads. At one time, two Kinabatangan locals were shipped out to the Phillippines as they didn’t have proper documentation,” he said.
Nazri welcomed the suggestions made by Anwar and Bung but dismissed calls for the RCI’s role to be expanded to the whole nation.
“It will only be for Sabah,” he said.