PUTRAJAYA: The voluntary surrender programme or better known as 3+1 Programme, which was introduced in 2014 to resolve the issue of illegal immigrants in the country, will end when the clock strikes midnight tonight.
Immigration director-general Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali (pix) said this was confirmed by Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who earlier stated that the deadline for the 3+1 programme was Aug 30 and it would not be extended.
"We want to avoid dumping of illegal immigrants in the country ... in conjunction with the national day celebrations, why not we try to free our country from illegals after Aug 30.
"Apart from the illegal immigrants, their employers and embassies are also responsible for bringing them home after Aug 30," Mustafar said in an exclusive interview with Bernama here.
Through the programme, he said, illegal immigrants who surrendered voluntarily would be charged a compound fee of RM300 and special pass of RM100 to enable them to return home without prosecution.
"The Immigration Department often received complaints from the local people who are uncomfortable with the influx of foreigners in the country," he said.
Looking at the situation, Mustafar said foreign immigrants often monopolised a particular area, especially in residential areas that could bring discomfort to the locals.
He said the influx of foreign immigrants would also lead to the spread of infectious diseases.
"So, strict enforcement is necessary to curb the influx of these foreigners," he said.
To date, 840,000 illegal immigrants have surrendered through the programme, including the 148,774 illegals who surrendered themselves this year.
Mustafar said the Immigration Department would continuously carry out operations to flush out illegal immigrants in the country.
"The department also needs the help of other enforcement agencies to take action against the illegal immigrants including to detain and bring them to court," he said.