PM urged to order AG to withdraw govt appeal

Datuk Sebastian Ting

Automatic entitlement to Malaysian citizenship

KUCHING: Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) wants Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob to urgently intervene by instructing Attorney General Tan Sri Idrus Harun to withdraw the government’s appeal against the High Court’s decision allowing children born abroad to Malaysian mothers with foreign spouses to be automatically entitled to Malaysian citizenship.

SUPP also appealed to the prime minister to instruct the Home Ministry to respect and implement the High Court’s decision.

SUPP secretary-general Datuk Sebastian Ting Chiew Yew in a statement yesterday (Sept 15) expressed the party’s disappointment over the announcement that the government had filed in appeal on the aforementioned matter.

“We are to be reminded of our prime minister’s maiden speech on One Big Malaysian Family or ‘Keluarga Malaysia’ concept.

“All Malaysians would like to believe that the most important message of this One Big Malaysian Family concept must be the concept of inclusiveness of all Malaysians, irrespective of gender, race, religion, or creed,” he said.

He said it was therefore fair to say that this ‘Keluarga Malaysia’ concept will now be put to the test by whether or not the Attorney General will proceed or withdraw the appeal immediately.

“While pending a withdrawal decision by the Attorney General, the affected mothers and their loved ones will continue to endure much hardship, anxiety, stress, and heartache. Our thoughts are with them,” he said.

“The decision to appeal as announced by Attorney General Tan Sri Idrus Harun, which was a surprise and a rude shock to many, has created a ripple of dismay, frustration, and anger among all women and numerous non-governmental organisations (NGOs),” he said.

Ting, who is also Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture and Piasau assemblyman, expressed SUPP’s full support for the call made by Sarawak Women for Women Society (SWWS) for the government to promptly withdraw its appeal against the High Court’s decision in this regard.

He also noted that Family Frontiers, an NGO, had launched an online petition which had garnered over 10,000 signatures within 24 hours, urging the federal government to drop the appeal.

“We must continue to stress and reiterate that the Federal Constitution is the supreme law of the land and each of its articles and clauses cannot be interpreted in isolation especially when such interpretation does not have logic, justice, fairness, equality, or simple ordinary common sense.

“SUPP hopes that our prime minister would ponder this issue deeply and make a quick and appropriate decision to withdraw the aforesaid appeal,” he said.