Malaysia-born teen must wait longer for IC as court allows extended stay

In December 2013, Navin Moorthy had through his father Moorthy Ramiah Pillai filed a civil suit against the director-general of the National Registration Department (NRD), the Home Ministry that oversees the NRD, and the federal government over his citizenship status. — Reuters pic
In December 2013, Navin Moorthy had through his father Moorthy Ramiah Pillai filed a civil suit against the director-general of the National Registration Department (NRD), the Home Ministry that oversees the NRD, and the federal government over his citizenship status. — Reuters pic

PUTRAJAYA, April 22 — The Court of Appeal today allowed the government to further postpone issuing an identity card to Malaysia-born Navin Moorthy until the end of its appeal against a decision awarding him Malaysian citizenship.

Navin, who will turn 17 this year, has been fighting to get his citizenship recognised and obtain an IC — a crucial document typically issued to Malaysians at the age of 12.

A three-man bench led by Datuk Abdul Aziz Abd Rahim allowed a request by Senior Federal Counsel Maisarah Juhari to extend the stay order. Navin’s lawyer Annou Xavier did not object to the request.

The two other judges are Datuk Rohana Yusuf and Dr Prasad Sandosham Abraham.

On January 22 this year, the Kuala Lumpur High Court granted Putrajaya a three-month stay on its previous order in November 25, 2014 to the government to recognise Navin’s citizenship and issue him an IC. This order expired today.

The hearing for the government’s appeal against the High Court’s order to grant Navin a Mykad was set for today, but the Court of Appeal allowed the case to be postponed to June 16 due to the limited time available for lawyers from both sides to argue their cases.

“Reason for postponement is at request of parties and constraint of time,” Abdul Aziz said. His panel had presided over five other cases today and it was around 4.30pm when the turn for Navin’s case came.

In December 2013, Navin had through his father Moorthy Ramiah Pillai filed a civil suit against the director-general of the National Registration Department (NRD), the Home Ministry that oversees the NRD, and the federal government over his citizenship status.

In his submissions, 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.

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