Human trafficking: Govt to step up prosecution to convict civil servants involved

Human trafficking: Govt to step up prosecution to convict civil servants involved

PUTRAJAYA: The government will step up efforts to prosecute and convict civil servants found involved in human trafficking or forced labour, Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said.

Speaking at a media conference regarding the United States’ State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons’ report 2023 here today, Saifuddin said that the matter was a priority for the government as it was part of the 15 recommended improvements submitted in the report.

“If compared to the involvement of other characters like employers and agents, it’s not that concerning but obviously it’s on our radar as it involves civil servants. Because there’s a body evaluating us who thinks that this won’t happen without the involvement of civil servants,” he said.

The report issued yesterday saw Malaysia rising from Tier 3 to Tier 2.

The report also recommended that Malaysia should emphasise on human trafficking cases involving civil servants and improve interagency cooperation. Saifuddin reiterated that the government would not compromise on civil servants being involved as it not only affected Malaysia’s standing in the report but had a negative impact on the national economy.

“Like it or not, we have to listen to the suggestion as there are parties evaluating us,” he said, adding that Malaysia’s rise in the report would have a positive effect on the economic sector.

He said the removal of import bans against Sime Darby Plantation, Top Glove and FGV due to allegations of forced labour was a welcome relief for Malaysia. “The rise in ranking and the removal of import bans will determine whether our products are marketable or not at the international level,” he added.


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