Take age into consideration when processing application
WHILE I was busy with Mothers Day celebration for my mum and wife, I was surprised to receive a WhatsApp “special announcement from MIC Klang Division” that there will be a special counter at the voter registration campaign in Klang.
The event was organised by the Special Implementation Task force (SITP), Prime Minister’s Department, which will help and process applications for birth certificates and MyKads.
Last year, my friend and I assisted an 82-year-old woman, who despite being born here, was not a Malaysian citizen.
Her late husband used to work at the Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Hospital and she has seven children.
The octogenarian wanted to travel to Australia and visit her niece.
She had already applied for citizenship and was waiting for her documents.
When my friend and I approached the officers at the National Registration Department (NRD) with the case, we were told that there were thousands of pending cases and she had to wait her turn.
The officers told us that it would take two years to process her application.
In the interim, the family went to the Immigration Department and it issued a Surat Akuan Perjalanan (SAP), which served no purpose though it cost RM500.
It is not a passport and it cannot be used for travelling overseas.
It is sad that those people with red identity cards cannot travel or leave the country.
Despite having the SAP, the country that she wanted to travel to refused to issue her a visa.
I suggest that NRD use its discretion when processing citizenship applications by taking into consideration the applicant’s age.
In cases like this, there should be another way of issuing passports for special cases, especially for someone who is over 80 years old.
She needs immediate action. It is pointless to have campaigns every now and then, stating that citizenship and birth certificate issues will be resolved, and yet we have among us an 82year-old woman who is awaiting her identity card.
I hope that someone in NRD will pay attention to this poor woman and give her the right to call herself a Malaysian after so long a wait, and allow her to fulfil her desire to visit her niece in Australia.