TAIPEI–A Malaysian man of ethnic Chinese descent will be deported today after more than two decades of illegal residence in Taiwan, according to the National Immigration Agency (NIA) yesterday.
The Malaysian man, surnamed Ng, came to the authorities’ attention when he was stopped for a traffic violation in January 2013 in Hsinchu. It was found that he had been living in Taiwan for 25 years without proper legal status. He was subsequently sent to the NIA’s Hsinchu Detention Center.
The detention center said that it is rare to see an illegal immigrant remaining in Taiwan for so long. What is even more uncommon is the fact that Ng had made total donations of NT$250,000 (US$8,402.50) to public welfare groups over the past four years, the center added.
Ng, 59, said he was a construction worker in Malaysia when he decided to travel to Taiwan on a tourist visa in search of work because wages in Taiwan were higher. He lived in Taoyuan County, Northern Taiwan, for 22 years before moving to Hsinchu three years ago, he said.
He said people in Taiwan are very friendly and hospitable and he wanted to help others even though he was not a wealthy man.
During the many years he spent in Taiwan, he visited tourist spots across the island and hopes to return one day to see more of the beautiful scenery, he said.
Illegal immigrants held at the center can apply to return to Taiwan after they have been deported, except in cases where they have a record of trying to escape detention, according to the authorities.