PSM wants SOP change to help stateless people become Malaysians

Source: Malay Mail

Dr Michael Jeyakumar Devraj speaks to reporters at Ilham Tower in Kuala Lumpur June 27, 2018. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, June 27 — Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) urged the National Registration Department today to amend its standard operating procedure (SOP) to confer citizenship on stateless people.

PSM central committee member Dr Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj today brought some 20 stateless persons, born and bred in Malaysia but denied their right to an identification card, to meet the Institutional Reforms Committee (IRC).

“We are asking the government enact a new SOP to approve citizenship for any children born in Malaysia, to a Malaysian father who can be identified through records like a birth certificate or DNA test.

“On top of that, the SOP needs to be amended so that all children who have been adopted for more than five years by a Malaysian family can also get citizenships,” he told reporters at Ilham Tower today. Read more

MP shocked 12,600 stateless just because parents’ marriage not registered

Source: Free Malaysia Today


KUALA LUMPUR: Padang Serai MP N Surendran today expressed shock that 12,667 children are stateless simply because their parents’ marriage was not registered.

Calling it a “national crisis”, he said the denial of citizenship to these children whose fathers were Malaysian citizens was a violation of the Federal Constitution.

He also urged Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and the government to take urgent steps to address the situation.

Surendran said he had asked Zahid in the Dewan Rakyat to disclose the number of children in Malaysia whose father was a citizen and whose mother was a foreigner, and who had been denied citizenship on grounds that the parents’ marriage was not registered.

“Zahid said that based on records of the NRD (National Registration Department) as of Feb 25, 2018, there were 12,667 children denied citizenship on grounds that their parents’ marriage was not registered.

“This figure of 12,667 is based on NRD records only. The real figure is bound to be much higher.” Read more

Born and bred in Malaysia: Stateless persons — Jamie Chai Yun Liew

Source: The Malay Mail Online

BY JAMIE CHAI YUN LIEW

MARCH 28 — Malaysia has a statelessness problem but not in the way that many expect. Stateless persons in Malaysia are not foreigners, migrants or even “illegals”. They are born and bred in Malaysia.

Between January and April 2018, I conducted research in Malaysia interviewing stateless persons, lawyers, paralegals, NGOs, and academics. Over the course of examining legal cases, reading news articles, and talking to Malaysian experts working in the field, I discovered there are six categories of stateless persons in Malaysia. These six categories include: (1) persons who were citizens before Malaysian independence (including those persons who came to work in plantations); (2) persons who have lost important documentation such as birth certificates or marriage licenses; (3) abandoned children (foundlings) and adopted children born in Malaysia; (4) children of mixed marriages or children born before a marriage was registered; (5) Indigenous persons; (6) some refugees and migrants. Read more

SUPP urges Putrajaya help in stateless children’s cases

Source: The Star 

The Star

Lee Kim Shin discussing with Affrizan and the children Vincent, 10, Zoey, 8 (in pink) and Eliza, 7.

MIRI: Sarawak United Peoples Party (SUPP) is appealing to Putrajaya to expedite the documents for stateless children in Sarawak – and to allow them to start schooling while these citizenship woes are being sorted out.

SUPP vice-president Datuk Lee Kim Shin is trying to secure schooling for three stateless kids in Miri who are orphans at the Miri Methodist Children Home.

The home last year took in these three kids, Vincent, 10, Zoey, 8 and Eliza, 7, whose parents had abandoned them.

However they have no proper birth certificate because their parents did not register their birth.

The home sought the help of Lee who is state assemblyman for Senadin after they were unable enrol them for the new school year due to the document woes.

Lee is arranging for these kids to meet with the Miri Education Department officers on Thursday morning. Read more

Stateless children outnumber population of Perlis, says DAP MP

Source: FMT News

BUTTERWORTH: A DAP MP has proposed that a public roundtable be held to resolve the problem of stateless children in the country.

Kulai MP Teo Nie Ching said the core problem was the “standard operating procedures” by the National Registration Department (NRD) which only gives out citizenship to children whose parents are legally married.

She said this should not be the case as the Federal Constitution states citizenship must be given to a person born with at least one Malaysian parent.

“The roundtable will be open to all political parties, BN or MIC, and all non-governmental organisations to resolve the problem.

“The numbers are growing year-on-year and it is worrying,” Teo said at a forum on stateless children organised by Batu Kawan MP Kasthuriraani Patto in Juru here yesterday. Read more

Waiting 30 years, woman says unfair that Zakir Naik gets PR

Source: FMT News

Sandra Monteiro, born and adopted as a baby, laments foreigners getting PR status ahead of stateless people like her, who are denied only due to some technicality. Pic from FMT News.

Sandra Monteiro, born and adopted as a baby, laments foreigners getting PR status ahead of stateless people like her, who are denied only due to some technicality. Pic from FMT News.

PETALING JAYA: A stateless woman is shocked that foreigners in Malaysia can easily be granted permanent residence (PR) status while her rights have been denied even though she was born here.

Sandra Monteiro claimed it was unfair that Zakir Naik, a controversial Islamic preacher, was granted PR status five years ago, according to a recent report.

“It is very unfair to me and the rest of the stateless people staying in Malaysia, who have been trying for many years to be acknowledged and to get hold of PR status,” she said.

Monteiro, 39, lamented the fact that Naik and other foreigners from Bangladesh and Indonesia were able to obtain their PR status easily while her request for citizenship was rejected. Read more

Could a permanent national task force resolve Malaysia’s stateless problem?

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Human rights lawyer Honey Tan said the authorities’ discretionary nature of granting citizenship poses a 'big challenge'. — File picture by Choo Choy May

Human rights lawyer Honey Tan said the authorities’ discretionary nature of granting citizenship poses a ‘big challenge’. — File picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — The federal government should set up permanent task forces in every state in Malaysia to ensure stateless children with genuine cases are recognised as citizens, a lawyer has proposed.

Simon Siah said the federal government would from time to time announce the formation of task forces to register stateless children, but noted that these task forces are only “temporary measures” and that most people didn’t even know they exist, let alone how to approach them.

He noted that there is currently a task force in Sarawak to help register stateless children and to assist the Home Ministry by providing recommendations after the National Registration Department (NRD) officials investigate such claims, but noted it will only run until year end.

“Such move is a move in the right direction but I would suggest that the Task Force to be made permanent so that each State under the ministry of women and children can assist to ensure that genuine application are approved and these children are given an identity as a Malaysian,” he added. Read more

What lies ahead for a stateless child in Malaysia?

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Stateless children in Malaysia have many different circumstances. Some are abandoned at birth, others are adopted but cannot trace their birth parents, and more are born to a foreign mother who did not register their marriage to their Malaysian spouse. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa for the MMO.

Stateless children in Malaysia have many different circumstances. Some are abandoned at birth, others are adopted but cannot trace their birth parents, and more are born to a foreign mother who did not register their marriage to their Malaysian spouse. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa for the MMO.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 20 — Children who are born in Malaysia but fail to get citizenship are thrown into a complex bureaucratic and legal mess, leaving them with an uncertain future that can appear hopeless.

Stateless children in Malaysia have many different circumstances. Some are abandoned at birth, others are adopted but cannot trace their birth parents, and more are born to a foreign mother who did not register their marriage to their Malaysian spouse.

Whatever their scenario, however, these children face an arduous road ahead.

While going to the courts is the most conventional way of challenging the National Registration Department’s refusal to recognise a Malaysia-born child as citizen, failure here sets the child up for a life of uncertainty. Read more

Tackle stateless people issue now, lawyers’ group tells govt

Source: FMT News

Lawyers for Liberty executive director Eric Paulsen says applications for citizenship hampered by administration obstacles and burdensome requirements. Pic taken from FMT News.

Lawyers for Liberty executive director Eric Paulsen says applications for citizenship hampered by administration obstacles and burdensome requirements. Pic taken from FMT News.

PETALING JAYA: Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) says the government must re-look its citizenship policies to address the issue of statelessness, especially among children.

Saying some policies had rendered thousands of rightful Malaysians stateless, the human rights group hit out at what it called “a serious lack of concern by the government and its agencies on these issues”.

“There is no genuine effort to register the affected communities, nor is there any special procedure to facilitate their registration despite knowing the context of the individual cases,” LFL executive director Eric Paulsen said in a statement today.

He added that applications were usually hampered by administrative obstacles, burdensome requirements and long delays. The people in question were also required to make repeat visits, eventually leading to rejection.

The group’s statement follows a Court of Appeal decision yesterday, dismissing separate bids for citizenship by two boys born in Malaysia. Read more

Court rejects two Malaysia-born boys’ citizenship bids, insists statelessness unproven

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The Court of Appeal has ruled Lim Jen Hsian's six-year-old son could not be granted citizenship despite being born in Malaysia. — Picture by Choo Choy May

The Court of Appeal has ruled Lim Jen Hsian’s six-year-old son could not be granted citizenship despite being born in Malaysia. — Picture by Choo Choy May

PUTRAJAYA, March 16 ― The Court of Appeal today dismissed separate bids for citizenship by two boys born in Malaysia, after ruling that they failed to prove they were stateless or were not citizens of other countries.

In the case of Malaysian Lim Jen Hsian’s six-year-old son, the Court of Appeal ruled the child could not be granted citizenship despite being born in Malaysia.

“There is no dispute that documentary evidence confirms the second appellant was born after Malaysia Day in the federation on October 6, 2010 at Hospital Tung Shin ― this fulfills the requirement of jus soli under Article 14(1)(b) or (Clause) 1(e).

“However the issue is also whether or not he has satisfied the requirement that he is not born a citizen of any other country under Article 14(1)(b),” Court of Appeal judge Datuk Badariah Sahamid said when reading out the brief grounds of judgment, referring to the boy as the second appellant.

Both Lim and his son had jointly filed their legal challenge in 2014 to, among others, obtain the child’s citizenship, based on the Federal Constitution’s Article 14(1)(b) read together with the Constitution’s Second Schedule’s Part II’s Clause 1(e) that give citizenship to every person who are born in Malaysia and who is not born a citizen of any country. Read more