A syndicate involving then-Sabah National Registration Department (NRD) directors had made at least RM11 million from selling identity cards to illegal immigrants in Sabah, the royal inquiry on illegal immigrants heard today.
Senior Special Branch (SB) officer Supt Ahmad Fauzan Mohamad testified today that none of the 94 people, who were arrested under the Internal Security Act (ISA) from 1995 to 2001 for their involvement in the syndicate, were ever charged in court.
A syndicate was selling identity cards in Sabah for profit.
“An estimate of RM11 million was accumulated throughout these actions,” Ahmad Fauzan told the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) here.
Ahmad Fauzan, who is based in the security and human trafficking syndicate police division in Kuala Lumpur, stressed that the syndicate was only motivated by monetary gain, and not for political reasons.
“I’ve no reason to look at other motives because monetary gain is already there,” he said.
Then-Sabah NRD director Ramli Kamarudin, however, told the RCI last month that then-Deputy Home Minister, the late Tan Sri Megat Junid Megat Ayub, had ordered him to issue NRD receipts, which matched the names and IC numbers of registered voters, to immigrants.
Ramli had said that about 200 NRD receipts each were issued in five or six state constituencies, which the government considered difficult to win, before the 1994 Sabah state election.
The state election saw Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) winning just 25 out of 48 state assembly seats.
But several PBS assemblymens defected to Barisan Nasional (BN) shortly after, causing the collapse of the PBS government.
Ahmad Fauzan said today that Ramli was detained for two years under the ISA from 1996 to 1998, while another then-Sabah NRD director, Datuk Abdul Rauf Sani, was put under restricted residence for about six months in 1996.
SB officer DSP Badaruddin Ismail testified last month that Ramli had sold 16,000 NRD receipts for more than RM1 million that enabled immigrants in Sabah to vote.
Ramli had sold each receipt for RM250 between 1993 and 1995 to illegal immigrants from the Philippines, India, Pakistan and other countries, according to Badaruddin.
Badaruddin had also said that Abdul Rauf had sold 6,305 identity cards to Filipino and Indonesian immigrants, as well as locals, for RM167,300.
Abdul Rauf told the RCI last month that blue identity cards were also issued to increase the number of Muslim voters in Sabah.
He had said he was aware that immigrants in Sabah were taught how to vote in elections, otherwise their identity cards would be cancelled.
Ahmad Fauzan said today that each IC was sold for between RM50 and RM1,400, adding that he did not know the identity of the recipients.
He noted that the syndicate’s operations had threatened national security.
“With the incursion of all these foreigners, it encourages activities of people smuggling,” he said.
“This (syndicate) is well-prepared and well-arranged. Besides JPN officers, there were also agents from the general public and sub-agents involved in issuing ICs,” added Ahmad Fauzan. (JPN is the Malay acronym for the National Registration Department.)
He pointed out that Megat Junid had signed the detention order for 80 of the 94 arrested under the ISA.
Ahmad Fauzan, who has done research and assessment on the syndicate, said a further 3,035 people in Sabah were charged in court by other enforcement agencies for forging identity cards and possessing fake identity cards.
Former Sabah NRD assistant registrar Kee Dzulkifly Kee Abd Jalil testified last month that 100,000 blue identity cards were given to Filipino, Indonesian and Pakistani immigrants in Sabah in 1993.
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s longest-serving prime minister who was in power from 1981 to 2003, has been accused of spearheading the so-called “Project IC”, in which citizenship was allegedly given to immigrants for their votes.
But former Sabah Chief Minister Tan Sri Harris Salleh, who administered the state from 1976 to 1985, has denied at the RCI of the existence of “Project IC”.
Dr Mahathir told a recent press last month that foreigners in Sabah had indeed received citizenship, but stressed that it was “within the law”.
The inquiry before former Chief Judge of Sabah and Sarawak Tan Sri Steve Shim Lip Kiong resumes later in the afternoon.
If the people of Sabah still want to vote in BN at next GE-13 after all these revelations, then I would say that Sabahans are just are a contended and naive lot. Only God can save them in the future.
Remember, 20-30% of Sabah population are tempered with 'Project IC' , these 20-30% immigrants coupled with army personnel, police force, postal votes , cheats and with 10-20% ignorant and naive sabahan that put BN in governing the state. Real Sabahan are the die-hard vote bank for opposition. BN knows it very well.
Problem is, how many Sabahans know about all this? I don't read our newspapers nor watch local news so I'm only guessing here - that this isn't exactly making the headlines in our local papers or TV1,2,3,7,8 or 9 right? or even Bernama and Awani news?
With such damaging evidences coming out of this RCI,yet the so-called Christian leaders like pairin,dompok etc continue to sing praises to the evil-devil umnoputras/bn govt over Rm4.5 millions given to the churches..Sabah needs DIVINE intervention to kick out those evil-devils.
This country was already heading towards lawlessness during the 4th pm's time and the speed was increased by his successors and we are now just one stop short of reaching there. If we don't vote for change in the coming GE then what awaits us at the 'destination' is doomsday for this nation.