Malaysia court overturns landmark citizenship ruling for women | Women News

Courtroom finds for the federal government after it appealed a decrease court docket resolution that girls, like males, ought to be allowed to cross their citizenship to youngsters born abroad.

Malaysia’s attraction court docket has overturned a landmark resolution that girls ought to be capable of cross on their citizenship to youngsters born abroad in the identical method as Malaysian males.

In a 2-1 resolution, the judges sided with the federal government and rejected the September 2021 ruling by the Excessive Courtroom that Malaysian girls had the identical proper as males to confer citizenship on their youngsters.

The case hinges on Article 14(1)(b) of Malaysia’s structure, which expressly offers fathers the automated proper to confer citizenship on their youngsters born overseas, however omits any point out of moms.

Advocacy group Household Frontiers, together with six affected moms, challenged the constitutionality of the clause in December 2020, arguing that the judges ought to interpret the clause in keeping with the precept of gender equality.

The group’s attorneys mentioned they’d take their case to the Federal Courtroom, Malaysia’s highest court docket.

The house minister has mentioned beforehand that the federal government appealed the Excessive Courtroom’s resolution to purchase time to amend the structure in favour of moms, starting with the formation of a brand new parliamentary committee to check the problem in December final yr.

Kasthuri Patto, an opposition member of parliament, referred to as on the federal government to maneuver ahead with the constitutional modification and guarantee equality for ladies.

“Do the best factor PM @IsmailSabri60,” she wrote in Malay on Twitter. “Name a particular session of parliament and amend the Federal Structure.”



The six girls who filed the case have been in a position to safe citizenship for his or her overseas-born youngsters after the decrease court docket ruling, however the attraction court docket mentioned that different purposes ought to stay frozen till the Federal Courtroom palms down its resolution.

The house minister revealed in parliament final month that there had been 591 submissions underneath Article 14(1)(b) from youngsters born abroad to Malaysian moms between 2021 and July this yr. Some have been resolved however most stay excellent.

The Malaysian authorities ratified the Conference on the Elimination of All Types of Discrimination in opposition to Girls (CEDAW) in addition to the Conference on the Rights of the Little one (CRC) in 1995, and amended its structure in 2001 to enshrine the precept of gender equality, nevertheless it made a reservation on CEDAW on issues coping with nationality.

The federal government maintains that the modification on gender equality doesn’t prolong to nationality and that issues of citizenship are outdoors the jurisdiction of the courts.

Charles Santiago, one other member of parliament, described the ruling as “regressive”.

“It’s not only a violation of CRC however can lead to displacement, battle and marginalisation, he wrote on Twitter. “We ought to be deeply ashamed of ourselves immediately.”

In keeping with world rights group Equality Now, Malaysia is one in all simply 28 international locations that also stop girls from passing their nationality to their youngsters on an equal foundation with males.

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