malaymail.com 28 Apr, 2021 08:15 am

What is women minister doing over Malaysia’s discrimination of Malaysian mothers in citizenship laws, ex-deputy ministers Hannah Yeoh, Azis ask

What is women minister doing over Malaysia’s discrimination of Malaysian mothers in citizenship laws, ex-deputy ministers Hannah Yeoh, Azis ask
KUALA LUMPUR, April 28 — Two former deputy ministers today asked Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Rina Mohd Harun what role she has played to help Malaysian women facing gender discrimination under the country’s existing citizenship laws. In the joint statement,...

The two Opposition MPs were referring to a lawsuit filed by Family Frontiers and six Malaysian mothers to challenge provisions in the Federal Constitution that discriminates Malaysian women in citizenship laws.The same laws however do not give the same treatment to Malaysian mothers with foreign spouses and with children born abroad, with the mothers having to apply for Malaysian citizenship for these children with no guarantee of being approved and with years of waiting for responses with possible repeated rejections.Separately, Joshua Andran, a lawyer for the six Malaysian mothers and Family Frontiers, yesterday told Malay Mail that the court case “is actually a case where the government and the plaintiffs should be on the same side”.While noting that the legal and constitutional arguments in such a court case can be complex, he said the Malaysian mothers’ lawsuit was ultimately to seek “equality” between Malaysian men and women on the issue of citizenship of their children.

Yesterday, Family Frontiers in a statement noted the “desperate, dire situations” that Malaysian mothers with foreigner husbands face when it comes to applying for Malaysian citizenship for their children born outside of Malaysia.Since the Federal Constitution does not grant their overseas-born children automatic Malaysian citizenship, such Malaysian mothers have had to resort to applying for citizenship under Article 15(2) of the Federal Constitution which involves a long and arduous process.

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