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How to become a citizen of Malaysia? Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 April 2009 18:45

Not that I want to become one because my current citizenship gives me a lot goodies worldwide which I would lose by returning it, but I just want to ask hypothetically. How can a foreign citizen qualify for Malaysian citizenship?

Is Malaysia like free countries which easily make foreigners who wish to stay, equal with their natives? Or is it more like Middle East dictator countries which don't give the citizenship even to those born there until they die?

Please support your answers with good arguments, don't just post answers like "yes, can, Malaysia is a good country" or "no, cannot, Malaysia sucks". Quote your sources.

I know in Anwar time it used to be possible but things have changed since. Does a child whose both parents are foreigners and legal residents in Malaysia get a Malaysian citizenship? Can a foreigner who legally resides in Malaysia for a longer period of time and speaks BM become a Malaysian? If can, what are the criteria?
Gabriel, what you said is a common myth among Malaysian non-Muslim, but trust me as an external party, it's not true.

A friend of mine, an American who converted to Islam and married a Malaysian, has been living in Malaysia since 1978 and his application for PR keeps on getting rejected. Another case is my friend's mother who is a Sikh from Indonesia and married a Malaysian Sikh. She also hasn't got PR and her oldest child is now 25, so you can imagine how long she was here until she got fed up couple of years ago and moved to Singapore.

Only foreign women who marry to Malay (not Chinese etc) men, which are few compare to foreign men married to Malaysian women, can get citizenship from my experience and I saw some Indonesian Sumatran men who married Malaysian women got it, but it's because Acheh people are basically Malays.

Btw, I'm not willing to give up my citizenship no matter what, not that I'm a patriot but it gives me a lot of benefits.

WHAT IS A CITIZENSHIP ?
A citizen is a native or naturalized person owing allegiance to, and entitled to protection from a government and to exercise civil rights.

A citizenship is the status of a citizen, with its rights and duties. The main legislation governing the Malaysian citizenship is the Citizenship Rules 1964.

WHO IS A CITIZEN OF MALAYSIA ?
By operation of law,

1. every person born before Malaysia Day who is a citizen of the Malaysia by virtue of these provisions
a. every person who immediately before Merdeka Day, was a citizen of Malaysia by virtue of any of the provisions of the Federation of Malaya Agreement, 1948, whether by operation of law or otherwise
b. every person born within Malaysia on or after Merdeka Day and before October, 1962
c. every person born within Malaysia after September 1962, of whose parents one at least was at the time of the birth either a citizen or permanently resident in Malaysia, or who was not born a citizen of any other country
d. every person born outside Malaysia on or after Merdeka Day whose father was a citizen at the time of his birth and either was born in Malaysia or was at the time of the birth in service under the Government of Malaysia or of a State
e. every person born outside Malaysia on or after Merdeka Day whose father was a citizen at the time of the birth if the birth was, or is, within 1 year of its occurrence or within such longer period as in any particular case was or is allowed by the Malaysian Government, registered at a consulate of Malaysia or, if it occurred in Singapore, Sarawak, Brunei or North Borneo, registered with the Federal Government.

2. every person born on or after Malaysia Day, and having any of the qualifications specified below
a. every person born within Malaysia of whose parents one at least is at the time of the birth either a citizen or permanently resident in Malaysia and
b. every person born outside the Malaysia whose father is at the time of the birth a citizen and either was born in Malaysia or is at the time of the birth in the service of the Federation or of a State and
c. every person born outside Malaysia whose father is at the time of the birth a citizen and whose birth is, within 1 year of its occurrence or within such longer period as the Malaysian Government may in any particular case allow, registered at a consulate of Malaysia or, if it occurs in Brunei or in a territory prescribed for this purpose by order of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, registered with the Malaysian Government and
d. every person born in Singapore of whose parents one at least is at the time of the birth a citizen and who is not born citizen otherwise than by virtue of this paragraph and
e. every person born within Malaysian who is not born a citizen of any country otherwise than by virtue of this paragraph

HOW CAN A PERSON BECOME A CITIZEN OF MALAYSIA ? A person can become a citizen of Malaysia either:
a. by registration
Where a person is by operation of law is a citizen but have yet to be registered, such person is entitled to citizenship upon application and be registered as a citizen of Malaysia.

or

b. by naturalization
Naturalization refers to the process of admitting an alien - a person not a citizen of Malaysia - to citizenship
subject to the requirements and conditions of the Federal Government

Under the Article 16 of the Constitution, any person of or over the age of 18 who was born in Malaysia before Merdeka Day, 31 August 1957, is entitled, upon making application to the Federal Government, to be registered as a citizen if he or she satisfies the Federal Government :

- that he or she has resided in Malaysia during the 7 years immediately preceding the date of the application, for periods amounting in the aggregate to not less than 5 years (permanent resident for 7 years and has been in Malaysia for over 5 years)
- that he or she intends to do so permanently
- that he or she is of good character and
- that he or she has an "elementary" knowledge of the Malay language.

To register as a citizen of Malaysia, you have to submit your application form which can be obtained from the counter of Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara or Registration Department of Malaysia.

Your application must be accompanied by supporting documents such as:
Identity card of applicant
Birth certificate of applicant
Birth certificate or certificate of citizenship of parents
Entry permit of applicant
Travel document owned by applicant in the last 5 years
Identity card of parents and sibling (brothers or sisters)
Children birth certificate
3 photographs of applicant
RM$10.00 application fee
Your application will not be accepted unless it is presented at the National Registration Office by you, the applicant in person who shall be required to sign the application in the presence of a Registrar of Citizens.

Once your application is approved, you'll have to pay a fee of RM$100.00 for the issue of certificate of citizenship.

WHO CAN APPLY TO BE A CITIZEN BY NATURALIZATION AND HOW ?
Any person over the age of 21 years who is not a citizen and if the Federal Government is satisfied that

he or she has resided in the Federation for the required periods and intends, if the certificate is granted, to do so permanently
he or she is of good character and
he or she has an "adequate" knowledge of the Malay language
may upon application made by such person, grant a certificate of naturalization to that person.

The period of residence in Malaysia which is required for the grant of a certificate of naturalization is period which amount in aggregate to not less than 10 years in the 12 years immediately preceding the date of the application for the certificate, and which include the 12 months immediately preceding the date.

That means you have to become a permanent resident for more than 12 years and have been in Malaysia for more than 10 years.

Application shall be made in Form C which can be obtained from the counter of Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara or Registration Department of Malaysia.

Your application in Form C must be accompanied by the following documents :

Identity card of applicant
Birth certificate of applicant
Entry permit of applicant
Travel document of applicant owned in the last 12 years
Marriage certificate of applicant (if any)
Identity card of applicant's spouse (if any)
Identity cards or birth certificates of applicant's children
Birth certificates or identity cards of applicant's parent (if any)
Identity cards of 2 recommenders
3 photographs of applicant
You will need 2 recommenders who should be a Malaysian citizen who is of or over the age of 21 years. Husband or wife, relatives, advocate and solicitor, person confined in a prison or in a psychiatric institution by order of court, person convicted of any offence and paid agent are disqualified.

No application for citizenship shall be accepted unless it is presented at the National Registration Department by the applicant in person who shall be required to sign the application in the presence of a Registrar of Citizens.

Once your application is approved, you'll have to pay a fee of

RM$200.00 if you are resident in the States of Malaya on Merdeka Day, 31 August 1957
RM$300.00 if you commenced residence in Malaysia after Merdeka Day, 31 August 1957
for the issue of your certificate of citizenship.

WHAT DOES "ADEQUATE" KNOWLEDGE OF MALAY LANGUAGE MEAN ?
A person applying for citizenship by naturalization should have an adequate knowledge of the Malaysia or native language.

The registrar of citizens shall whenever and for the area required, set up a Language Board for the purpose of determining whether or not a person applying for citizenship under the Citizenship Rules 1964 has an adequate knowledge of the Malay or native language as required by a person so applying.

A person is deemed to have an adequate knowledge of the Malay language if it is in the opinion of the Language Board he or she is able to with reasonable proficiency to speak that language and unless prevented by blindness or other physical impediments, to read and write Malay in the Jawi or Rumi (Roman alphabet) script.

However the provisions relating to reading and writing of Malay in the Jawi or Rumi (Roman alphabet) script shall not apply to an applicant who was resident in the States of Malaya on Merdeka Day.

HOW IS THE CALCULATION FOR PERIOD OF RESIDENCE IN MALAYSIA ?
Any residence in Malaysia

a period of absence from Malaysia of less than 6 months
a period of absence from Malaysia for the purposes of education of such kind, in such country and for such time as may from time to time be either generally or specially approved by the Minister
a period of absence from Malaysia for reasons of health
a period of absence from Malaysia on duty in the service of the Malaysia or of any State, where such period is not inconsistent with the essential continuity of such residence
shall be treated as residence in Malaysia.

However, any residence in Malaysia,

a period during which a person was not lawfully resident in Malaysia
a period spent as an inmate of any prison or as a person detained in lawful custody in any other place, other than a mental hospital, under the provisions of any written law of Malaysia and
a period during which a person is allowed to remain temporarily in Malaysia under the authority of any pass issued or exemption order made under the provisions of any written law of Malaysia relating to immigration
shall not be treated as residence in Malaysia.

WHAT DOES "ELEMENTARY" KNOWLEDGE OF MALAY LANGUAGE MEAN ?
A person applying for citizenship should have an elementary knowledge of the Malaysia or native language.

The registrar of citizens shall whenever and for the area required, set up a Language Board for the purpose of determining whether or not a person applying for citizenship under the Citizenship Rules 1964 has an elementary knowledge of the Malay or native language as required by a person so applying.

A person is deemed to have an elementary knowledge of the Malay language if it is in the opinion of the Language Board he or she is able to say and understand what a person of his or her standing is likely to wish to say or understand in Malay in normal intercourse with a person of a different community.

However, there is an exception for an inability person due to physical impediment or of deafness or dumbness.

HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO WAIT TO GET THE RESULT OF MY APPLICATION FOR CITIZENSHIP ?
For fresh applicants, you will know the outcome of your application in 2 years time.

If your application has been submitted and in the processing stage, you can expect the result of your application in a year.

Where your application is in the final stage, you should be informed shortly of the result of your application.

WHERE MY APPLICATION FOR CITIZENSHIP HAS BEEN REJECTED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, CAN I APPEAL IN THE COURT ?
No. A decision of the Federal Government shall not be subject to appeal or review in any court. The Minister may delegate to any officer of the Federal Government with the consent of the Ruler of Yang di-Pertua Negeri of any state, any of his function relating to citizenship application. Thus, as an aggrieved person by the decision of the person to whom the functions of the Minister are delegated, you may appeal to the Minister of Home Affairs.

Even though you may have fulfilled all the conditions, your application may still be rejected if the Federal Government is not satisfied with your application. You may have to submit a new application if you are still interested to be a citizen of Malaysia.

There are many more of this information that u can get through the malaysian immigration's document library website below:
Document Library: Malaysian Immigration:
http://www.lawyerment.com.my/library/doc/imgr/lctz/

or simply go to the National Registration Department (NRD).
NRD hold 'A Day with the Clients' every Friday in the last week of the month
Time: 9 am - 12 afternoon
Venue: Level G,Customer Service Office, NRD headquarters

 

Source: http://topmalaysiavacations.com/malaysia-vacation-packages/how-to-become-a-citizen-of-malaysia



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