Deputy minister says DNA results only supplementary to citizenship bids

Deputy Home Minister Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman said the granting of Malaysian citizenship was subject to the provisions of the Federal Constitution. ― Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Deputy Home Minister Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman said the granting of Malaysian citizenship was subject to the provisions of the Federal Constitution. ― Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 27 ― Genetic test results may be used to support citizenship applications but are not sufficient for automatic approval, Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman told Parliament today.

The deputy home minister said DNA testing would demonstrate biological ties but added that citizenship applications also took into account the parents’ nationalities and marital status at the time of birth.

He added that citizenship matters were subject to the Federal Constitution and laws related to marriage registrations, the legitimacy of children, immigration, and more.

“At the present moment, the government only uses DNA test results as a supporting document to confirm the blood relations of a person, with other family members, especially between children and mothers or father, or with their other siblings, and does not make it as a conclusive proof in granting Malaysian citizenship.

“This is because each applicant must still abide by other rules, especially those linked to marriage registration, and hold a legitimate status in the Federation,” he said in the Dewan Rakyat during Question and Answer session today.

Aziz was responding to Wangsa Maju MP Datin Paduka Dr Tan Yee Kew, who asked if the Home Ministry planned to accept DNA test results as proof in ascertaining blood ties between a child and his father, for citizenship applications.

Earlier this year, Azis told Parliament that children born to a Malaysian father and foreigner mother before their marriage is registered, are not considered Malaysian citizens.

However, he said they could apply for citizenship under Article 15A and that such applications would be “considered” if constitutional and legal requirements are met.

Article 15A provides for the federal government’s special powers, where it can register anyone below the age of 21 as citizen in “special circumstances as it thinks fit”.

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