LAHAD DATU: The special integrated operation to trace illegal immigrants in the Eastern Sabah Security Zone (Esszone) will continue despite allegations that it has affected the local economy, Eastern Sabah Security Command (Esscom) commander Datuk Abd Rashid Harun said today.
The operation in Kudat, Sandakan, Lahad Datu, Kunak, Semporna and Tawau would not be stopped but extended to other areas in the Esszone, he said.
The Esscom operation, participated in by various federal and state government enforcement agencies, aims to free the Esszone of smuggling and other illegal activities.
“Esscom will not compromise with those who protect illegal immigrants, including employers and grassroots leaders,” he said when closing a talk on the integrity and security of civil servants in the Esszone.
Abd Rashid said the large-scale operation was launched following the release of the report of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) on Illegal Immigrants in Sabah and on the directive of Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.
“That’s why the government launched this operation. Nobody should question why it is being done. The issue of safety is a shared responsibility, and the safety of citizens should override personal interests,” he said.
Meanwhile, Abd Rashid advised Esscom employees and officers to always be honest and responsible in carrying out their daily tasks and to avoid corrupt practices.
The Esszone covers 1,733.7 km in Kudat, Kota Marudu, Pitas, Beluran, Sandakan, Kinabatangan, Lahad Datu, Semporna and Tawau. – BERNAMA