Retroactive recognition of native status for children of mixed marriages

Sharifah Hasidah

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By Nur Ashikin Louis

KUCHING, Feb 15: Children of mixed marriages born before the passing of the Interpretation (Amendment) Bill will also be recognised as natives.

Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department (Law, MA63 and State-Federal Relations) Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali said the new law will be retroactive in nature whereby children who were denied native of Sarawak status in the past, are now entitled to the status.

“However, what is not retroactive is the decisions regarding the transactions that have already been decided,” she told DayakDaily today.

When asked to comment further, she clarified that the new law does not apply to previous cases relating to native status which have been heard and decided in courts.

“But the status of the children from mixed marriages will be recognised as natives,” she said.

Earlier today, Sharifah Hasidah tabled the Interpretation (Amendment) Bill at the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting and it was passed on the same day.

This means a child from a mixed marriage may be considered as a native even if only one of the parents is a native.

The previous practice required both parents of mixed marriages to be a native of Sarawak.

The new definition, however, is subjected to additional conditions and requirements by the Majlis Mesyuarat Kerajaan Negeri (MMKN) to avoid exploitation and abuse of the native status. — DayakDaily