Legal slog continues for boy fighting for citizenship

Navin Moorthy's counsel, Annou Xavier (front), said the senior federal counsel representing Putrajaya argued that a stay order is needed to allow their appeal to be properly ventilated at the higher court. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
Navin Moorthy's counsel, Annou Xavier (front), said the senior federal counsel representing Putrajaya argued that a stay order is needed to allow their appeal to be properly ventilated at the higher court. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 2 — A boy seeking to have his citizenship recognised will have to wait another week before he will know if the High Court will continue to hear his case, pending an appeal by Putrajaya at a higher court.

Judge Datuk Hue Siew Kheng will decide on October 10 whether or not to stay proceedings while the federal government files an appeal at the Court of Appeal against an earlier High Court ruling to dismiss its application to strike out the case brought by 16-year-old Navin Moorthy.

Navin’s counsel, Annou Xavier, said the senior federal counsel representing Putrajaya argued that a stay order is needed to allow their appeal to be properly ventilated at the higher court.

“Our reply to their application is that there are no special circumstances to warrant a stay,” he told Malay Mail Online after both sides presented their arguments in chambers.

On June 20, Hue rejected Putrajaya’s bid to strike out Navin’s suit, ordering the government to answer to the merits of Navin’s application demanding for his citizenship and to also pay RM3,000 in costs.

Annou said earlier that Hue had ruled that Navin’s application was “not (a) clear cut case” when striking out the government’s application.

Navin, 16, is suing the director-general of the National Registration Department, the Home Ministry and the federal government over his citizenship status through his father, Moorthy Ramiah Pillai.

In his submissions filed last December, the teenager claimed that he was initially issued a birth certificate that listed him as a citizen when he was born on July 8, 1998, but found that his status was later changed to “Bukan Warganegara” or non-citizen.

Navin, who was born to a Malaysian father and Filipino mother, is also listed as a citizen in his Malaysian passport issued by the Immigration Department.

His businessman father, Moorthy, had applied twice with the NRD for his son’s citizenship, but claims that both applications were rejected by the Home Ministry.

Navin is seeking a declaration that he is a Malaysian citizen under Articles 14 and/or 15A of the Federal Constitution, and that he be issued a birth certificate and MyKad stating that he is a citizen.

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