KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22 — Despite a technical issue yesterday, the details of the three children — who were the first in the country to receive Malaysian citizenship certificates after being born overseas to Malaysian mothers and foreign fathers — has been uploaded to the National Registration Department’s (NRD) online system.
A Family Frontiers spokesman said that all three of the children’s mothers — Adlyn Adam Teoh, Myra Eliza Mohd Danil and another who only wanted to be known as Devi (not her real name) — have confirmed that they received calls from the NRD this morning.
“I kept my mobile phone very close to me today, and made sure the ringer volume was high so that I wouldn’t miss the call from the NRD,” Teoh told Malay Mail today.
“NRD called me at 9.04am and to my great relief, they confirmed that our (childrens’) citizenship details are indeed in the system.”
Commenting on the issue, Professor Datuk Noor Aziah Mohd Awal, Children’s Commissioner of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam), said she was pleased to hear that the children had received their citizenship certificates and the ensuing confirmation.
“I see no reason why the government wants to delay in issuing the certificate. Yesterday, JPN gave a flimsy excuse that their printer was faulty, although they have finally given the certificates,” she added, using the Malay acronym for the NRD.
She also said it was very frustrating for the many mothers who are still waiting to receive their childrens’ citizenship certificates.
Last Friday, the three mothers and their children were given a letter by JPN that called them to be present at the department headquarters at 2.30pm yesterday, to receive the certificates.
However, after arriving yesterday and waiting until 5pm, the mothers were initially told to go home by NRD officers, who supposedly said that the certificates could not be printed that day as there was some trouble with the printer or printer settings.
The mothers, visibly distraught, then gave a press conference regarding the matter outside the building.
At the time, the mothers said that they were told that they would receive another letter to collect the certificates within the next 14 days.
However, when they were about to leave at 5.15pm, the mothers were called back in and were told by an NRD officer that the department had found a way to print the certificates, and asked the mothers to wait.
They finally received the certificates at about 6.25pm yesterday, but were told that the NRD would confirm with them today if the children’s details had been uploaded onto the department’s online system.
This is following the landmark case from September 9 last year which saw the High Court in Kuala Lumpur last September ruling that Malaysian women should be given the same right as Malaysian men to automatically confer their citizenship to their children born overseas to foreign spouses.
The case was filed by Teoh, Myra, Devi, Family Frontiers president Suriani Kempe, and three others; against the government.
For the record, the government has appealed the above court decision, with the appeal to be heard at the Court of Appeal on March 23.