On May 14, 2012, Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia learned from minister counselor (Consul Affairs) that some 15 Thai workers were lured to come to Malaysia with promise of employment since May 7 but did not get a job as being promised by their brokers. They lived in Rawang district north of Kuala Lumpur and wished the Royal Thai Embassy to assist them get back to Thailand.
Minister Counselor (Labour) then travelled to meet the workers at their temporary house to discuss the matter. The workers said they were promised a job at a giant Thai construction company in Malaysia by an illegal broker, named Mr. Thawee, from eastern Rayong province.
Mr. Thawee told them that the company needed many workers in “Fitter” position and would pay them some 120 baht per hour for eight hours a day and overtime pay of 1.5 times of their regular pay; accommodation would also be provided. Having knew the company and interested in the offer, the workers, therefore, decided to take the offer. The illegal brokers (Mr. Thawee) then took them for skills/knowledge testing and job interview for the position in Chonburi province.
Mr. Thawee told the workers to prepare for the travelling but did not give them any receipt. He told the workers that they would be pick up at Su-ngai Kolok checkpoint by Mr. Sing, a company’s representative in Malaysia, and brought to Kuantan city in Malaysia. Mr. Sing came to pick them up as promised and charged them operational fee of some 14,000 baht each.
The workers travelled to Malaysia through the Rata Panyang Checkpoint on May 7, 2012, with a tourist visa. While in Malaysia, Mr. Sing kept in touch with them and told them to wait for the job offer. However, he told the workers some time later on that the company did not offer them a job but promised to find them a new job at other company.
The Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia discussed the matter with Mr. Sing and learned that he was a supervisor of a company, whose job was to ask Thai workers to come to work in Malaysia. Having been told about Employment and Job Seeker Protection Act B.E. 2528, Mr. Sing then agreed to initially return the workers some 7,000 baht each and promised to give them back the rest of the money though the Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia. The Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia took the workers to emergency accommodation at the Royal Thai Embassy in Malaysia and helped them get back to Thailand on May 15, 2012.
The Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia wants to warn Thai workers who wish to travel to work in Malaysia, especially construction workers, to be aware that construction works or semi-skilled works in Malaysia pay low wages. Workers also have to work hard and are risked of danger and they will not be able to learn new skills; so it is not worth the travel expense to come to Malaysia and work in these positions. Workers, therefore, should be cautious of job offer from illegal job broker. They are recommended to contact Ministry of Labour’s Department of Employment when they receive a job offer or before they pay the money, in order to find out if the offer is real. Once they pay the money, they will also need to get a receipt; otherwise they may end up having the same fate as the 15 Thai workers, who did not get a job as promised and ended up having debts after they borrowed the money to pay the operational fee to the illegal broker.
For more inquiry, contact the Office of Labour Affairs in Malaysia via telephone at 03-21455868/21456004 or visit the office’s Facebook.