Court sets Aug 16 rehearing for NRD’s ‘bin Abdullah’ out of wedlock surname appeal

An appeal by the National Registration Department (NRD) and two others against the appellate court’s decision to allow a Muslim child conceived out of wedlock to adopt the father’s name as surname rather than ‘bin/binti Abdullah’ will be reheard by the Federal Court on August 16. — Reuters pic
An appeal by the National Registration Department (NRD) and two others against the appellate court’s decision to allow a Muslim child conceived out of wedlock to adopt the father’s name as surname rather than ‘bin/binti Abdullah’ will be reheard by the Federal Court on August 16. — Reuters pic

PUTRAJAYA, July 16 — An appeal by the National Registration Department (NRD) and two others against the appellate court’s decision to allow a Muslim child conceived out of wedlock to adopt the father’s name as surname rather than ‘bin/binti Abdullah’ will be reheard by the Federal Court on August 16.

The panel to hear the case will consist of five judges and not seven as originally set.

Lawyer Nizam Bashir for the Muslim couple and child whose identities have been withheld by the court said all parties involved were notified of the change in the empanelment of judges in a case management today via e-review system.

“The court took note of the importance of the appeal but they were unable to empanel a panel of seven judges on August 16 and the court could not postpone the matter further,” he said when contacted.

In May 2017, the couple and their child were granted judicial review to compel the NRD director-general to replace the child’s surname “Abdullah” with the name of the child’s father in the birth certificate.

The NRD, its director-general and the government resorted to the federal court to overturn the decision.

Under Shariah law, a child born less than six months after the parents’ marriage is considered illegitimate.

The appellants’ case was heard by the Federal Court last year and the five-man bench led by former chief justice Tun Raus Sharif reserved its decision.

However, Raus has since resigned while some judges on the panel have also retired. — Bernama

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