PUTRAJAYA, Jan 13 — The Op Benteng to combat entry of illegal immigrants under the National Task Force (NTF) will end in June this year, said Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin.
He said all new implementations and plans regarding the operation would be handed back to the Home Ministry for further action.
“After Op Benteng, led by the Malaysian Armed Forces (MAF) ends, it will be handed back to us (KDN) and we will ensure Op Benteng always go forward,” he told a press conference after the KDN Monthly Assembly and New Year Mandate 2022 at Home Ministry Complex here today.
Op Benteng is an operation to guard against illegal entry at borders as part of an effort to manage the Covid-19 situation in the country.
Although the NTF will end this June, Hamzah said the Gasak Laut and Darat operations will be reactivated to curb cross-border crimes.
“Besides that, to strengthen Sabah’s waters, the initiative to appoint auxiliary police by resort operators will be implemented.
“Engagement sessions will be held with resort operators to ensure that this initiative is carried out properly,” he said.
Last month, Chief of Defence Force Gen Tan Sri Affendi Buang said the decision on whether the NTF led by the MAF will be maintained will only be known by the middle of this year.
He said the NTF which was set up on an ad hoc basis had proven effective in curbing the entry of illegal immigrants through the operation codenamed Op Benteng, since the Covid-19 pandemic hit the country. — Bernama