SIBU, July 7 — Stateless Sarawakian Liana Sari Santud, 20, who recently went viral on social media for sharing her plight, has appealed to the government to grant her and her family members citizenship.
Liana, who is from Rumah Sika, Pasai Siong here, said besides her, her parents Santud Danong and Gading Gandut Ngerantar, and two of her three siblings are all stateless despite being born in Sarawak.
“My family has applied several times for a valid identity card from the authorities, but until now there has been no news from them,” Liana, who was born at Sibu Hospital, told The Borneo Post today.
She shared that her elder brother Asan somehow managed to get citizenship status on his birth certificate, despite her parents being stateless.
She called on the Sarawak government to assist her family so that they have equal rights like other Sarawakians.
Liana, who studied at SMK Rosli Dhoby, scored A’s for Bahasa Melayu, Moral Education, History, and Mathematics; B+ for English; C+ for Chemistry and Biology; C for Physics; and passed Iban Language for her Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM).
She will be continuing her studies at University of Technology Sarawak (UTS) and revealed her uncle will be the guarantor for her UTS scholarship.
“I am going to study there (UTS) because of the help of my uncle, who became my guarantor under the scholarship, because he is the only member of my family who has a valid identity card,” she said.
UTS chairman Datuk Dr Annuar Rapaee recently said the university will let Liana continue her studies although she does not have citizenship.
“There is no issue for her to study in UTS, with or without IC (identification card). We treat her equally as other Sarawakians and that is why she is also eligible for free foundation, which is funded by the state government,” said Dr Annuar, who is also Deputy Minister for Education, Innovation and Talent Development. — Borneo Post