Long-time immigration officer Garfield ‘Gary’ Wong has been appointed to the position of Deputy Chief Immigration Officer starting 1 October.
Mr. Wong will take on responsibility for strategic oversight of the Immigration Department’s Enforcement Unit.
‘One of my first priorities will be to focus on removing those persons who have no right to be here including work permit holders with no work,’ Mr. Wong said.
The Department has recently been granted permission to recruit an additional nine officers for Mr. Wong’s unit (enforcement) in order to allow for increased operational capability. Mr. Wong’s role will also require him to liaise with other law enforcement agencies both in Cayman and otherwise on issues of mutual interest.
Mr. Wong has been an immigration officer for his entire working career.
He worked in the Enforcement Unit as a Senior Immigration Officer from 1989 to 1992 and then returned to the unit in 1994 at the time of the Cuban refugee crisis. The following year he was promoted to Assistant Chief Immigration Officer and he remained with the Enforcement Unit until 2001.
He has also spent stints during his 20-year career managing the airport and seaport border control operations. Since 2005 he has been the Assistant Chief Immigration Officer in charge of visa control.
One of Mr. Wong’s immigration career highlights was his work with the Enforcement Unit during the Cuban refugee crisis in the early 1990s. His outstanding efforts earned him the Queen’s Certificate and Badge of Honour.
‘I am deeply honoured by the appointment and I know it will be challenging but I will do my best to serve the people of this country,’ Mr. Wong said.