Monday, April 19, 2010

PR status to foreigners who marry Malaysians upon registration of marriage in Malaysia - Best Solution

There is a great injustice that happens when Malaysian citizens (and/or Malaysian PR holders) marries a foreign spouse. To stay in Malaysia, these foreign spouses have to have visas [commonly referred to as 'spouse visas'] which may be a few months....later it becomes one year visas.
“My one-year pass to remain in Malaysia expires at the end of next month. Since my husband has divorced me, I don’t know how to get it extended,” she said at her home at PD Utama near here.

Foreigners or ‘stateless’ people need their Malaysian spouses’ signatures to remain in the country. The pass needs to be renewed annually until they attain permanent resident status or citizenship. - Star, 19/4/2010, Mum needs identity to survive

The problem is that the 'control' is with the Malaysian citizen/PR holder spouse, and the applicant  for the visa is that Malaysian spouse/PR holder. 

What should be is that these foreign spouses should be given immediate 'permanent resident'(PR) status when their marriage gets registered in Malaysia at the relevant government department.  [Note that PR status can be later revoked, if needed.] Now, the application for PR status is only considered after 12 years (some say 5 years - but alas, there is nothing in the law that clearly defines the actual number of years..., and it is not automatic and there needs to be an application put in. It will be interesting to see if all persons are treated equally - as many of our former Ministers, etc also have foreign spouses. Did they have to wait years before they got their PR status (or citizenship) or did they preferential treatments?

Now, children of these marriage are Malaysian citizens - and the problem arises when there is a death of the  Malaysian citizen/PR holder spouse ...when there is an abandonment/divorce...or maybe even a revocation of the citizenship/PR status for some reason or other.

What happens to the foreign spouse and the Malaysian children if one of the above happens? Under the current system,  the  foreign spouses  visa will not be able to be renewed - and that means that he/she will have to leave Malaysia...but the Malaysian children? What happens to the foreign spouses home/property in Malaysia? What happens to the foreign spouses other responsibilities - like the responsibility to the elderly parents/dependents of the Malaysian citizen/PR holder spouse and other dependents? Unlike some western cultures, in Malaysia (and Asia) obligations and responsibilities by reason of marriage also extends to the extended families of their spouses....but our current immigration laws do not reflect this. 

Current Malaysian law seems to say that if your Malaysian citizen/PR holder spouse suddenly dies, abandons you and/or your family, divorces you,.... you, the foreign spouse will have to leave Malaysia? 

The current law does not care about the Malaysian children - the UMNO-led BN government position is that you can take your 'Malaysian children' and go....

The current law does not care about the responsibility and care of the elderly parents/other dependents..., and this is so uncaring.

As I said earlier, there must be a change in our Malaysian policy and law...., and it should be as follows:-
** Upon registration of marriage in the relevant government department in Malaysia, the foreign spouse shall immediately be given a permanent resident status,
***Upon the dissolution of the marriage for whatever reasons, the government has the right to review the 'permanent resident' status and revoke it
****Factors that will be considered, and will not result in a 'revocation' shall be:-
- existence of children of the marriage
- existence of obligations/responsibilities to the parents/dependents of the parties of the marriage in Malaysia
- the 'foreign spouse' still is staying in Malaysia
[The government naturally is concerned that some 'foreigners' may be marrying Malaysians just to be able to stay legally in Malaysia...and that the whole marriage is really a 'sham' - but that is why the power to revoke the PR must be with the government, and could be used if these 'shams' happen]

PORT DICKSON: Yati Rahayu Abdullah, 30, is in a quandary since being divorced by her husband nine months ago.

The mother of two young children is deemed to be ‘stateless’ as she has no documentation to prove that she is a Malaysian.
Stateless: Yati fears that she might lose Mohd Aiman (right) and Nuraryana if she is sent again to a detention centre.

Abandoned as a baby and raised at a longhouse in Keningau, Sabah by a Christian priest, she fears of being separated from her children and sent to a detention camp for illegal immigrants.

“My one-year pass to remain in Malaysia expires at the end of next month. Since my husband has divorced me, I don’t know how to get it extended,” she said at her home at PD Utama near here.

Foreigners or ‘stateless’ people need their Malaysian spouses’ signatures to remain in the country. The pass needs to be renewed annually until they attain permanent resident status or citizenship.

Yati, who never went to school, said she lived with the priest at his home until she was 13 and then followed him to Kuala Selangor.

Before they moved, the priest handed her a Malaysian identity card.

In Kuala Selangor, she worked at a Chinese restaurant and stayed at her employer’s home.

“I worked for the family without getting any pay for five years. I ran away when I could no longer take it,” she said, adding that she then started working at a factory.

It was then that she came to know her husband’s family who adopted her.

“However, when I went to the National Registration Department to renew my IC, I was arrested as they said my old one was fake. I was then sent to the detention centre for illegals in Pekan Nenas, Johor,” she said.

After six months, her adopted family sought her release by proposing marriage.

“I married my husband in March 2006 and we then moved to PD,” she said, adding that she then embraced Islam.

The couple were blessed with two children – Mohd Aiman Daniel who is now two, and Nuraryana Natasya, nine months.

Yati said her former husband has been giving her about RM100 a month for expenses since their divorce.

Yati said she approached the Welfare Department for aid but was told that since she was not a Malaysian, she was not entitled to any. - Star, 19/4/2010, Mum needs identity to survive

Remember the case of Romita Hasibuan...and her 4 Malaysian children... - Maruly Aziz Bin Abd Mutalib (14+ tahun), Sarah Nor Varah Hanim Binti Abd Mutalib (13+tahun), Yonatan Adam Fauzi Bin Abd Mutalib (11+tahun) dan Ismael Syah Putra (8+ tahun). STOP DISCRIMINATING SARAH,AND GIVE THIS MALAYSIAN CHILD HER MYKAD


Unknown said...

Well yes this is a genuine case which reflects flawas in immigration law but we must keep in mind that this is an isolated case and usually govt laws only reflect procedures under normal circumstances I think she can get a solution if she approach to the court under the family law or else she can simply approach to UNHCR which will issue her an asylum card based on her situation but of course govt will not and shall not change laws simply because of some isolated cases because if govt will ease the permanent residence procedure then opportunists will also try to take advantage and in the end it will lead to more problems than solutions

Unknown said...

absolutely nonsense and human right abused from this corrupt BN GOVMNT , so if one of the foreigners get divorced and he or she has kids , do you mean they should be throw out of the country, malaysia should be expel from all UNITED NATION PROGRAM , , as they re not following united nation international law on immigrant and RESIDENT PERMIT STATUS,, EVEN children born in malaysia by foreign spouse , they refused to acknowledge them as part of the country,so how do u say someone is a citizen of a country , even you malaysians they claimed u re malaysian is not because u are born on the soil of malaysia , that is why u re called malaysia, the law world wide is any where you are born that is your country , UNITED NATION SHOULD LOOK INTO THIS ISSUES , JUST DNT FOLD HANDS AND LET MALAYSIA GOVERNMENT DESTROY HUMAN RIGHT .

Unknown said...

Many cases for which have not been handled .

Hopefully, these cases can be resolved as soon  as possible