Migrant workers returning even after camp closure

Min Thu 1
Myanmar migrant workers are still returning from Thailand through the Myawady 999 gate located in Myawady. Photo: Min Thu

Although the Kyauklonegyi camp in Ward 4 in Myawady in Kayin State was closed on 1 December, Myanmar migrant workers are still returning from Thailand through the Myawady 999 gate located in Ward 5 in Myawady Town, said officials with the Border Guard Force .
“Most migrant workers are returning to extend their passports so they can go back to Thailand under the MoU system, while some are returning to visit their families. We are assisting them and providing them guidance.
More than 600 migrant workers entered Myanmar through the gate between 1 and 12 December,” said Lieutenant Moe Swe with Myawady 999 gate’s Border Guard Force.
More than 50 migrant workers entered the country through the Myawady 999 gate from the Thailand-Myanmar border gate, after the Mae Sot Immigration office in Thailand scrutinized them.
“I am happy to work in Thailand. I earn Baht325 per day. I have received OT for Baht60 per hour. Now, I’ve come back to renew my passport under the MoU system.
I had to pay Baht18,000 to my boss because he contacted the company to get a passport under the MoU system,” said Maung Yan Soe Naing, a migrant worker from Thayarwady town, Bago Region. After the Thai government started cracking down on illegal migrants, most of the migrant workers returned from Thailand to the Kyauklonegyi camp, beginning 29 June, 2017. A total of 119,037 migrant workers, including 85,329 men and 33,708 women, have returned to their homes in 17 months.

—Min Thu (Hpa-an) (Translated by Hay Mar)

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