15,000 illegal guards in Malaysia

KATHMANDU: Some 15,000 Nepali migrants workers are working in Malaysian firms as security guards illegally, local newspaper The Malay Mail reported yesterday.

As per Malaysian law, under the Private Agencies Act 1971 and he circulars, security guards must have military training or experience but the group has no such training.

The staggering figure was disclosed to The Malay Mail by Security Services Association of Malaysia (SSAM) president Datuk Shaheen Mirza Habib. Nepali guards are deemed illegal since they do not have military experience as required for their employment, he said.

“Those without military background are illegally employed. They make up three to four times the number of licensed security guards from Nepal.”Around 4,900 licensed Nepali security guards are working in Malaysia.

Nepali guards without military experience are cheaper. Those with military background are paid around RM 1,500 per month while those without are paid less, about RM 900 a month, he said. A local guard is usually paid less than an ex-army Nepali guard.

“These are the companies that will illegally hire Nepali guards. They are also the ones who take foreign guards that are not from Nepal.” Nepali security guards are in high in demand due to a common perception that they are more disciplined, hardworking and reliable.

Hiring of non-military background Nepalis has created havoc in Malaysia. The Malay Mail urged the Home Ministry to conduct an immediate audit of more than 400 security companies nationwide.

The Home Ministry reacted to The Malay Mail report and said its officials would act to weed out security firms that fail to abide by the law and circulars. “We are starting the audit from Sunday,” said Datuk Ahmad Faud Aziz, deputy secretary general (security). He did not elaborate on the fate of the illegal security guards.