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The continuing saga of Ragu’s citizenship woes

 | February 20, 2012

Because of mistakes made by the Welfare Department, Ragu could not get his MyKad despite being born in Bagan Serai, Perak.

PETALING JAYA: Despite a royal intervention in 2008, an application for citizenship still remains elusive for an odd job worker born in Perak.

R Ragu, a father of five, said he was fed up with the National Registration Department (NRD) and the Welfare Department (JKM) for delaying his MyKad application and was worried for his children’s future.

“I’m being treated as a refugee in my own country. NRD has even indicated my children as non-citizens and called them illegitimate,” said an upset Ragu.

Relating his ordeal, Ragu said he was taken under the care of the JKM since the age of four after his parents abandoned him. His folks did not get him a birth certificate.

Although the JKM did get him a birth certificate from the NRD later, the document was filled with loopholes as it did not indicate his citizenship status and left most the columns unfilled.

“The only thing indicated in the document was my name, my parents’ name and the place I was born which is Bagan Serai. The rest was left blank including citizenship status,” said Ragu who speaks fluent English.

He added that the JKM even indicated his age wrongly when they registered him then.

Unable to further his studies after Form 5 due to the absence of an identity card, Ragu said he had to fend for himself by doing odd jobs.

Ragu attempted to get a MyKad from the NRD several times but was only given temporary identification card in 2004 with the number, 750125-08-6593.

However, after 2004, the NRD decided not to renew his temporary identification, saying the JKM had failed to provide the necessary details to proceed with his application.

Upset, Ragu camped outside the palace of Sultan of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah for three days in September 2008 seeking royal intervention which duly came.

“The Ruler instructed the NRD to do the necessary to ensure I get my MyKad. However, till today NRD said they couldn’t process my application saying they have not received paperworks from the JKM.

“And the JKM director for Ipoh refused to meet me to resolve the matter,” said Ragu.

He said that he had lost a lot of money to get a citizenship and had to skip meals due to financial constraints. His children are aged between 1 to 12-year-old while his wife also does odd jobs with him.


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