(de Ware Tijd) PARAMARIBO — The authorities have imposed easier procedures for illegal aliens to legalize their stay in the country. The Ministry of Justice and Police (J&P) has taken its services to the districts where the majority of aliens are hiding. Minister of J&P, Edward Belfort, opened a branch of the Alien Registration department in the District Commissioner’s Office in Commewijne.
The district harbours many illegal Guyanese working in the fishery sector. Belfort intends to take on Wanica next. Early next year he plans to serve the illegal Brazilians working in the gold fields in Brokopondo. Rachelle Groenveld, deputy director Alien Registration tells de Ware Tijd the department wants to be closer to the people. Of the 2,800 aliens who have registered so far for this year, one third lives in Commewijne. Commewije has only a small population of illegal Brazilians, Haitians and Chinese. District Commissioner Ingrid Karta-Bink called on the aliens to make use of the service. ‘There will come a time when our patience will run out,’ she said, referring to the plague of drunken aliens in public. A consequence of this plague is that often fights and other forms of crime erupt.
Groenveld explains that the aliens who move to the districts, often find it hard to travel to Paramaribo to make documents for their stay in order. They also often have the wrong documentation with them so when they are faced with a lengthy process of dealing with their case, they simply give up and disappear. Mostly Brazilians, who arrive in Suriname, stay in Paramaribo for one day only. They then move to the gold fields in Brokopondo and Sipaliwini for months on end without first registering with the authorities. Groenveld hopes that when the Brokopondo office is in operation the aliens will report for registering.-.