KUALA LUMPUR: The government did not issue an identity card to a 13-year-old boy with mixed parentage as the couple had refused to undergo a DNA test as directed.
Responding to a suit filed by the boy’s mother, former national registration department (JPN) director-general Ruslin Jusoh said the parents had been told to undergo the test to prove the boy’s paternity.
“We asked the couple to take a DNA test as the boy’s features and complexion did not resemble either of his parents,” Ruslin said in an affidavit filed on Feb 26 and sighted by FMT.
Ruslin was JPN director-general between April 2019 and March this year. He is now the director-general of the immigration department.
On March 24 last year, the couple had brought the boy, their second son, to the JPN branch at Jalan Duta here where officers noted that his features and complexion did not match those of the couple.
Three months later, JPN’s investigations and enforcement division recorded a statement from the couple and advised them to take the test, said Ruslin.
The boy’s parents rejected the advice when they returned for further questioning in October, he added.
“Investigations are still on-going to determine the paternity of the boy and, as such, the suit must be dismissed,” said Ruslin.
Meanwhile, responding to Ruslin’s affidavit, the 48-year-old mother insisted the boy was the couple’s biological child.
His features and complexion differ from those of his parents as they were of different races and nationalities, she said.
In her affidavit affirmed last month, the mother, an Indonesian national, said she was advised by her lawyer that JPN had no right to interfere in the private life of her family.
“There is no requirement for us to undergo any DNA test given that the defendants (JPN and the government) do not dispute that the child was born during our marriage.
“Therefore, my son is a legitimate child of my husband, and premised on that, is a Malaysian citizen,” she said.
The woman also claimed the couple had refused to take a DNA test after receiving wrong advice from JPN.
She filed the suit in the High Court in January this year, naming JPN and the government as the defendants.
Her originating summons seeks a declaration that her son is a Malaysian citizen. She also wants the court to compel the director-general to issue the boy with an identity card.
In addition, she wants JPN to return her son’s birth certificate which is in the department’s possession.
In an affidavit in support of her suit, the mother said she had married her husband in 2000 and that they have two children. The elder son, now 19, is a Malaysian citizen.
Both children were classified as citizens in their birth certificates as their father is a Malaysian citizen.
However, the mother said JPN refused to issue her younger boy with an identity card last year and instead confiscated his birth certificate.
Her affidavit says she was advised by her lawyer that JPN had no power to deny her second son an identity card.
She fears that without citizenship her younger son will be denied free education, free access to healthcare facilities and a Malaysian passport to travel abroad.
She confirmed that her son was not a citizen of any other country and has not made any application to any foreign state for citizenship.
The mother contends there are legal issues to be determined by the court, including whether JPN’s actions were unconstitutional and tainted with illegality.
Meanwhile, the woman’s lawyer, A Srimurugan, said Justice Amarjeet Singh is scheduled to hear the suit on Aug 16.
“Parties have been instructed to file their written submissions on or before Aug 2,” he said after attending a case management last week.