KUCHING: A total of 723 applications for Malaysian citizenship under Article 15A of the Federal Constitution has been tabled to the State Level Special Committee of Citizenship Status, said Minister of Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah.
According to her, the applications were tabled for the committee – which was formed in August, 2016 – to take further action.
She also commented that after meeting with Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin earlier this year in February, it was decided that the committee would continue to review all applications as a top priority.
Of the 723 application, she revealed that 127 applications have been approved by the Home Ministry while the rest were still being processed and the committee will notify applicants via post by the ministry.
“I am glad that this committee is able to help those who deserve Malaysian citizenship in Sarawak. I also hope that the committee will be able to help more after this,” she said during her speech at an citizenship confirmation presentation ceremony at Wisma Wanita here today.
Having said that, Fatimah also hoped that in the near future Sarawakians would be more responsible when it came to registering their children’s birth, resulting in fewer applicants under Article 15A.
Those who apply for Malaysian citizenship under Article 15A of the Federal Constitution are those who are or have children whose birth was not properly registered, giving birth to a child before wedlock and giving birth to a child born out of wedlock.
There are even cases where a biological parent to a child would abandon their children before registering their birth, leaving them with their relatives.
Under the Article 15A of the Federal Constitution, the federal government has the power to register any person below the age of 21 as a citizen “in special circumstances as it deems fit”.
During the event, seven children from six Sarawakian Chinese families received letters to confirm their Malaysian citizenship.