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Illegal Immigrants and the Elections in Sabah, Malaysia

  • Crisisonomy
  • Abbr : KRCEM
  • 2012, 8(3), pp.249-267
  • Publisher : Crisis and Emergency Management: Theory and Praxis
  • Research Area : Social Science > Public Policy > Public Policy in general

Kim, Jong-Eop 1 Wan Shawaluddin Wan Hassan 2 Ramli Dollah 2 Ahmad Mosfi Mahmood 2

1University of Wales. Department of Politics & International Relations
2University of Malaysia Sabah

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Malaysia is famously a nation of immigrants in the world. Recently, immigrants are seen as a major problem in the state. Especially, many illegal immigrants have come to Malaysia and caused a problem in the state. As the debate over illegal immigration in Malaysia rages on, there have been calls to change many systems. The illegal immigrants have an enormous influence over the politics of Malaysia, and recent the political enlargement of immigrant group in general election have brought latent ethnic tension out into the open. The problem of illegal immigrants will not be understood without looking at the background and the political and religious rivalry between the major ethnic groups that dominates the state. Thus, embedded from this assumption, this article will look at how the political and religious competition among Muslim Bumiputera (MB) and Non-Muslim Bumiputera (NMB) in the state will eventually lead to the involvement of immigrants as claimed, especially by the losing parties in the elections. This study explores how immigrants would become one of the main subjects in the study of the elections in this state. The study also conducts how immigrants would participate and influence to general election. This study based on the interviews and observations in Tawau, Kunak, Lahad Datu and Sandakan of the field work during the election 2008 throughout the state and the Batu Sapi’s by election.

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