SAPP wants issuing of documents to be transparent
KINABALU, July 14, 2009: Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) Deputy President
Eric Majimbun said the Government's decision to speed up the approval of
Malaysian citizenship and birth certificate registration, while welcome,
must be implemented stringently and transparently.
He said while it is true there are many genuine locals in Sabah who do not
have identity cards or even birth certificates, it would not help solve
the problem but create more problems like foreigners taking advantage if
not implemented responsibly.
He cited the case of a MyKad bearing his family surname Jerome Majimbun,
who actually does not exist, that was seized from the hand of a Filipino a
year or so ago and about which nothing has been done till now.
Majimbun, who is Sepanggar MP, was commenting on Monday's report quoting
Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussain as saying his Ministry
will speed up the approval for Malaysian citizenship, entry permit and
birth registration so long as the applications meet the criteria set by
the Government, and that it targeted to process all applications by end of
This followed the 11 measures announced earlier by Prime Minister Datuk
Seri Najib Tun Razak in conjunction with his 100th day in office Saturday,
which included measures to reduce crime and fight corruption as well as
facilitating applications for registration of births in Sabah and Sarawak.
"I wish like to congratulate Hishammuddin for taking proactive action on
the issuance of Malaysian citizenship and birth certificates. And at the
same time, I also wish to remind him that more authority should be given
to the NRD Director (Sabah) to seriously screen the applications" Majimbun
Many Ketuas in Sabah have issued false declarations : SAPP
Meanwhile, SAPP Imformation Chief Chong Pit Fah said many illegal
immigrants had obtained or acquired birth certificates through forged
statutory declaration or popularly known as " Surat Akuan".
"The issuance of those birth certificates was back dated 25 years ago and
everybody knows that Sabah is still grappling with problems of illegal
immigrants. That's why it is vital for the NRD to be cautious when
processing late birth registration." he said.
He said native chiefs and village chiefs issuing false statutory
declaration to illegal are well documented facts, adding there were
reports that some local village chiefs had been arrested on suspicion of
issuing dubious statutory declaration to foreigners for pecuniary gains.
He said the issuance of citizenship documents such as statutory
declaration to foreigners was a serious threat to national security and
the perpetrators deserved to be punished by the law.
Chong expressed confidence that the Barisan Nasional (BN) State Government
is aware of threats to national security posed by Sabah's phenomenal
increase in population, since 1970.
The number of refugees from neighbouring countries increased unabated with
the arrival of economic refuges attracted by the rapid economic
development in Sabah and the prospect of employment, especially with the
opening of vast land for oil palm plantations, he said.
"Since the 1973 influx of illegal immigrants from neighbouring countries
spanning about 30 years, Sabah population's had recorded a 328 percent
increase (from below 700,000 in 1970 to almost three million in 2005)
compared with Sarawak's increase of 130 percent ". he said.
Meanwhile, Tamparuli Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) supports the statement by
PBS Youth chief Datuk Jahid Jahim on the issue.
Its committee member, Stephen Jaya said this is important in the interest
of the society in Sabah and also its future generations because because of
dubious ICs and illegals has burdened the State and the people in Sabah.
"And yet these issues have not been resolved ". he said in a statement.
He said there are many people in rural areas who have no identification
documents. Hence, the exercise must be carried out carefully to prevent
those not qualified from owning such important documents accorded only to
Jahid had said a mechanism should be in place to detect the possibility of
misuse of authority involving citizenship applications in Sabah.
The Sabah Justices of Peace Council (MAJAPS), while lauding the Prime
Minister's promise to deal with the problem of birth certificate andaa
citizenship matters in Sabah and Sarawak, had said such assurance was
pointless if no support was given to the courts.
Its Honorary Secretary, Datuk Lawrence Thien said this is because of the
need to validate any late registration of birth certificates in view of
the large immigrant population in Sabah.
" If not such certificates issued by the NRD are not admissible in
evidence and if used to issue Identity Cards (ICs), it will meant the
government is using inadmissible documents to give citizenship. If that is
the case , many illegals will get citizenship". he had said.
Through the court, he said illegals would be filtered out and only those
born in Sabah with parents originally from Sabah would land these
Consumer Association of Sabah and Labuan (Cash) President Datuk Patrick
Sindu also urged caution on the matter,
" The issue of of citizenship is never-ending in Sabah beginning with the
IC Project in early 1980s.
" We fear more foreigners namely illegal immigrants, would see this as an
opportunity to apply for citizenship using doubtful identification
documents ". he said.
He said the mobilizing courts to rural areas, whereby magistrate could do
proper vetting, was the best way to resolve late birth registration
issues.(Quoted from DE)
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