RM1,000 fine not applicable to Sabah, Sarawak — Masir

Masir Kujat

KUCHING: The revised penalty from RM50 to RM1,000 for late birth registration does not apply to Sabah and Sarawak.

This was revealed by Deputy Home Minister Datuk Masir Kujat last night. The ministry will issue a statement to clear the air today he added.

He told The Borneo Post last night that he had checked with his Ministry in Kuala Lumpur on whether special treatment could apply to those living in the interior of Sabah and Sarawak where the geography and cost of transportation would pose challenges to them.

However the 60 days grace period is still applicable to all Malaysians and if residents of Sarawak and Sabah broke the law they would still have to pay current penalty but not the revised penalty, he stressed.

In a report by Bernama yesterday , the other Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed revealed that the implementation of the revised penalty fee will be imposed with immediate effect.

“This is to ensure and encourage parents to register their children as soon as possible. If they register the birth late (60 days after the birth of a child), then they will have to pay the RM1,000 fine,” he said.

“The government has made a decision (to increase the penalties) after the amendments on the Births and Deaths Registration and Adoption Act (Act 299), approved and passed by the Dewan Rakyat last year, which also stipulates that

all births must be registered within 60 days, including that of illegitimate babies,” explained Nur Jazlan, when speaking to reporters after the opening of the new Simpang Renggam national registration department (NRD) in Kluang.

The government increased the extension period for late birth registration from 42 days to 60 day in August.

This decision was reportedly made to ensure than single mothers can complete their confinement period before registering their newborn.

Previously, the National Registration Department (NRD) considered all registrations made after 42 days from the birth of a child as late and the parents would be subjected to a penalty of no more than RM50.

Nur Jazlan also took the opportunity to remind parents living in Peninsular Malaysia that they do nothave an excuse for late registration of birth thanks to the good facilities here.

“However, it is different for parents in Sabah and Sarawak who may face problems in terms of distance and location of NRD offices that are far from residential areas (especially in rural areas),” he added.

After the news broke out, Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru condemned the revised penalty arguing that it would be unfair to those living in the interior who are facing  challenges in getting to towns and cities just to get birth certificates within the specified time.

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