Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gender Discrimination, and certainly NOT an 'Education For All' policy

Yes - children whose father is Malaysian, who have submitted application for birth certificate, citizenship and Mykad can go to school in Malaysia...

What about children whose mother is Malaysian?

I thought that the Federal Constitution has been amended to ensure that there is no discrimination based on gender.

It is the mother who deals with 9 months of pregnancy...and who suffers the pain of child-birth, and is generally burdened with most of work connected with child upbringing - and Deputy minister Wee Ka Siong says that they are irrelevant.

Even the current law with regard to citizenship does not discriminate - only requirement is that one of the parent is a citizen or has a permanent residency status. As example, see Article 1(1)(c) of the Second Schedule of the Federal Constitution,
(c) every person born within the Federation after September, 1962, of whose parents one at least was at the time of the birth either a citizen or permanently resident in the Federation, or who was not born a citizen of any other country;
So, why is Deputy Education Minister giving us bad education about rights and values...Is he a male chauvinist? Is he propagating that men are more important than women? Time he be removed as Deputy Minister - he embarasses Malaysia.

I also wonder how they will establish that the Malaysian male is the father...Will they be having DNA tests?

Also note that many of these children may be NOT children of any marriage - and, of course, many Malaysian men will not even come forward and acknowledge that they are the father of the child...

'STATELESS CHILDREN' - what the Minister is talking is about children, who really are Malaysian citizens, but who have yet to get their birth certificate and/or MyKad for various reasons.

The term 'stateless children' is used mischievously...for it does not refer to all stateless children BUT only to those children whose FATHER are Malaysians.

These are not really stateless children - they already are Malaysians - only they are yet to be registered, etc..to get their Birth Certificate, MyKad, etc..., that is all.

When you are talking about stateless children, we are talking about those who do not have nationality or citizenship.

You are talking about some of those who have fled Burma, Southern Thailand, Southern Philipines, Acheh(previously)... because they fear their lives and liberty of themselves and those of their family.

The Rohingyaans, for example, are not even recognized by Myammar as being people of that country. Here, in Malaysia, many are hiding without any passport and other documentations. It is for these children that Malaysia must reach out and ensure that they at least get an education.

Charity - that is what it is. We have to help these children - ensure that they at least get an education - i.e. basic primary and secondary education, at the very least.

Without formal education, they will not have a bright future at all given the fact that most employers now require their workers to have some form of formal education.

Without formal education, they may end up at the lowest echeleons of society devoid of the means for social movement upwards.

I have to say that Malaysia is under the obligation to provide education for all children in Malaysia - and that will include all stateless children (irrespective of which country their fore fathers hail from), children of migrants/asylum seekers/refugees, etc

When it comes to children - then we must be concerned for ALL children, and this commitment should be towards all aspects of the child's welfare - including education and healthcare...

The Education Ministry will soon issue a circular to all schools nationwide, advising them to accept all ‘stateless’ children, even if they have no birth certificate, so long as the father is a Malaysian citizen.

However, the advice will come with a caveat: the children must have already applied, through the Malaysian parent, to the National Registration Department (NRD) for a birth certificate, citizenship or MyKad.

wee ka siong mca pc 300708 03“A birth registration certificate will be issued to the child which will state that the child is not a citizen...,” deputy minister Wee Ka Siong said while on an official visit to Kota Kinabalu over the weekend.

“This will not be a problem as long as the father is a Malaysian citizen. The status of the mother is not important (whatever country) she is (originally) from...”

However, Wee could not categorically confirm, despite persistent questioning by the media, whether children of non-citizen fathers and Malaysian mothers will be accepted into government schools.

He merely said: “Malaysia definitely supports the Unesco policy of ‘education for all’. - Malaysiakini, 24/2/2009,
Stateless children's admission open to abuse
Mr Minister, we certainly do not support UNESCO's policy for all - as this policy is clearly selfish and is only concerned about children who are Malaysians, whose father is Malaysian, who is yet to get their birth certificates and MyKad..

This policy certainly do not cover even children whose mothers are Malaysians - and this goes against even our Federal Constitution. All children, whose one parent is Malaysian or a permanent resident, is a Malaysian.

This policy does not even cover stateless children... and certainly falls short of meeting the call of "Education for All'

1 comment:

Kristina said...

By not educating stateless children (and I mean truly stateless, without any perspective or a citizenship or residency), Malaysia consciously creates a new generation of poverty. Only 1/3 of refugee kids receive some kind of primary education (usually informal). These kids are here, whether Malaysians want it or not, and they have to be educated out of charity, responsibility or care for the Malaysian society.