Gerakan Youth slams Bertindak’s call to review citizenship granted to 1.75 million non-Malays from 1957 to 1970 Andy Yong Kim Seng: No need to make an issue out of a non-issue

Press statement by

 

Gerakan Youth Deputy Chief

 

Andy Yong Kim Seng

 

April 27, 2017

 

Gerakan Youth Deputy Chief Andy Yong Kim Seng condemned Mohd Khairul Azam Abdul Aziz, the secretariat head for Barisan Bertindak Melayu Islam (Bertindak) for alleging that the citizenship of 1.75 million Malaysians granted between 1957 and 1970 had violated the stipulated terms under the Federal Constitution and planning to initiate legal action to question the granting of citizenship to non-Malays. Andy Yong dismissed Bertindak’s challenge as legally flawed and historically problematic, it does not constitute a right basis to question the citizenship status of minority groups in this country, there is no doubt of their loyalty and contributions to the country.

 

“There is no need to make an issue out of a non-issue, the Federal Constitution with its nationality law, citizenship rights and privileges was a reflection of the ‘social contract’ agreed by our founding fathers, the quid pro quo agreement had laid down the foundation for the birth and development of Malaysia until today, the law serves us well and there is no need to make retrospective challenge to overturn the status quo and hurt the feelings of other communities,” said Andy Yong.

 

Andy Yong said the letters and spirits of the Federal Constitution are more susceptible to more than one interpretations when read by a subjective reader that shows the tendency of being politically motivated. He reminded Bertindak that the Federal Constitution must be read and respected in totality, not selectively or with ill-intention.

 

Andy Yong noted that although citizenship acquisition by operation of law under registration and naturalisation requires oath taking as stipulated in Article 18 (1) and 19 (9). However, he also pointed out that Part III of the Federal Constitution about the acquisition of citizenship (Article 14-22) have spelt out the right to citizenship for all qualified individuals.

 

He stressed that Article 30 and 31 have explicitly stated that the Federal Government has full authority over the granting of certificates of citizenship and determining the citizenship status of a person that is in doubt. It was further supplemented in Clause 2, Part III, Second Schedule of the Federal Constitution that states clearly that “a decision of the Federal Government under Part III of this Constitution shall not be subject to appeal or review in any court.”

 

“There is hardly ambiguity or confusion in our nationality law as stated in the Federal Constitution, but unfortunately there were many questionable interpretations that are driven by vested interests or intentions that were invalid or flawed, they were uncalled for and detrimental to national stability and harmony, such actions should be discouraged and discontinue for the sake of national solidarity,” said Andy Yong.

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