Here I am. At the final part of this neverending Chronicle and my war against the overlords of inefficiencies, the dreaded Malaysian Immigration.
I left my home at 7.15 am to journey to Shah Alam PKNS for one last duel with this foul institution of neglect. Reached at around 7.45 and finally got my place in the queue to take the number and at around 7.55 am I was seated. So far so good – they actually officially open at 8 am but apparently they let you in early, so keep that in mind. By 8.20 the room was filling up and finally it was my turn. I thought we could end it within an hour or so.
The lady took all my documents plus the passport, cursorily looked at it, tapped a few things on her computer and then passed back to me and told me to pay. She said, take a number to pay.
I looked at the queue, the same queue I was in earlier, but now snaking its way along the corridor. Excuse me? I have to take a queue? Again? What’s wrong with my current number?
Yes, you need to go all the way back in line to take a DIFFERENT queue number in order for you to pay.
This is by far, the stupidest procedure of all time. Stupidest. Whichever imbecile that came up with this procedure deserves an award for being the biggest moron of all time, should be shot, hung and dried in the public square. But it was so expected (moronic procedures) of our Malaysian Civil Service, that’s it would have been absolutely shocking if they came up with a procedure that made sense or that reflected any signs of intelligence higher than an amoeba. Like for instance, transferring the same queue number you have in your hand to the payment queue. Or have another queue machine at hand to provide a fresh queue number for payment. Or just write the goddamn number onto a toilet paper. I mean, there could be a billion ways to resolve it but Malaysia chooses the absolute, most stupid way to solve it. This is because its the Immigration’s KPI to have as long queues as possible and as many people as possible sardined into a small non-ventilated room in order to show that they are ‘busy’ and ‘hard at work’. And it speaks volumes to the absolute idiocy of our civil service procedures – the ultimate shithousery to give to tax paying citizens. Its like they came up with these procedures while taking a dump.
To beat this god forsaken procedure, I would recommend the moment you get your first queue number, to immediately go back into the same queue again (which would have been built up) and then when you reach the front, just pretend that you have already gone through the first queue number and now you have to go for payment. Ask for payment queue number. They will give it to you. They won’t recognise you because they are generally not really vested in how ugly or good looking you are. And there is absolutely zero communications between the officers. So now, you should have 2 queue numbers. By now, the first queue number should already be up, you jump right into their seat, get the lady to tap stuff on their ancient VAX computer and pretend to be frustrated when she tells you to re-queue again for payment. Then, wait for your payment queue number and voila make the payment.
Because I did not do that, I had to re-queue and then wait again – for another 2 damn hours. I observed a few things: there are 15 counters available and only 4 officers working in a room chokeful of human beings. Secondly, the payment counter is ONLY ONE. So it took 2 hours to go through number 14 people. Also, the payment counter is not just for payment. Apparently it’s also for enquiry and such. Thirdly, the guy behind the counter takes his own sweet time to press for the next number. After completing one person, he sits there, staring powerfully at all of us pathetic idiots looking at him, imploring him to press the button so the number can switch.
Malaysia Immigration – you are the champion in shithousery.
I paid RM221 – Credit card only accepted, so don’t expect e-wallet or cash – and the officer said to me, “Normally, how long do you need to wait?”
I was a bit stunned. I wanted to say, “How the hell would I know?” but apparently he thinks I do this everyday for my living. I just shrugged, unsure what to answer.
He said brusquely, “Come back around an hour and go straight to Counter 15.”
And so, around 1.5 hours, a breakfast and a Teams Meeting later, I came back and went straight to counter 15. Apparently, there is no process here to collect. You just walk straight up to the counter, in front of all the disapproving looks of the people sitting down there like idiots waiting for instructions. You just ask the officer , I am here to collect passport of maid.
And he will ask your name, and pass to you the passport – the new one now has a VISA permit on it. Oh, if you had a passport cover before, it will be gone, because apparently they need to remove it to put the permit, and they never bothered to put it back. I rather wrap the passport in used diapers than to pass the passport back to these group of people to get the passport cover. No way.
I said thank you and actually bowed obsequiously like a Japanese, received it with two hands as if I am being awarded the Order of the British Empire from the Queen. They failed to appreciate my sarcasm and I scrambled away from this hellhole as quickly as possible.
There is a form for feedback below, I suggest all of us go into it and give an honest review of this service.
a) Go to the Immigration where your IC number and permit address is – if KL, then DUTA, if PJ, then PKNS Shah Alam.
b) Don’t go in the afternoon – go early in the morning. It officially opens at 8 am but loiter there from 7.40 am onwards. They may open early. Once they do, rush to the lift, kick anyone else who follows you in it and run like a mad dog to the office for foreign workers. I would give you directions but the whole area is crazy confusing. So just give in to your instinct and ask the Lord to lead the way to the right room.
c) Once there, take up the queue number for ‘kemaskini’ – which means modifying the passport. Immediately go behind the queue again and once in front again, ask for a payment queue number even if you haven’t kemaskini yet. If the officer recognises you, pretend you have an epileptic attack or just state you have a twin.
d) Remember to have all your documents at hand. Photostat your maid’s old passport front page and permit page, the new passport front page, YOUR IC front and back, bring your actual IC as well, bring your credit card for payment and ensure you have two documents:
- Permohonan Kemaskini Dokumen Pembantu Rumah – This document is as rare as golden bird shit. Apparently it cannot be found online, including their own stupid website> I got mine from the officer from Duta during one of my forays there. I’ve posted the jpg here in case you desperately need it:
- You need to write a ‘Surat Permohonan’. I wrote mine in English and it’s as follows:
Immigration Department of Malaysia
To whom it may concern,
I, <your name>, IC No: <your IC> would like to request that the permit of my current house maid, <maid name> (OLD Passport No: <old passport no>) to be moved to her new passport number <new passport no>.
<your IC> <your contact>
d) After this, wait for your payment, make your payment and wait for around an hour before barging your way through the wall of people to counter 15 and say you are here to collect.
That’s it. Hopefully I never need to face these jokers again for the next ten years (my maid passport expiry), which by then, hopefully this ancient practice of mental torture and abuse called Malaysian Immigration will be improved for the sake of the generation to come.