Sarawak minister: Home Ministry to speed up processing of citizenship applications

Fatimah (seated centre) speaking to reporters after chairing the PBB Women supreme council meeting on Jan 19, 2023.

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By Nancy Nais

KUCHING, Jan 19: Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail has assured Sarawak that his ministry will speed up the processing of citizenship applications.

Women, Childhood and Community Wellbeing Development Minister Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah said this was among the pledges Saifuddin gave when a delegation from Sarawak paid a courtesy call on him in Putrajaya recently.

“Saifuddin said the ministry will hasten the process and give applicants ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers on getting citizenship under (Article) 15A of the Federal Constitution.

“Currently Sarawak has some 900 pending cases which are still waiting for answers,” Fatimah said after chairing the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Women supreme council meeting today.

She added it was also a relief to note that the Home Ministry has agreed to revive the Special Committee for Citizenship under the same Article.

This Special Committee, Fatimah said, only exists in Sarawak but ceased when there was a change in the federal government.

“Yes, we asked the minister himself to reactivate the Special Committee.

“Although they do not approve submissions, I want to emphasise the importance of their roles. It was established in 2016 to deal with problems concerning children without citizenship status. They facilitate and ensure each applicant submit proper and complete documents,” she added. — DayakDaily