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2008 Oct 21 - NRD told to set up mobile task force

NRD told to set up mobile task force

TAWAU: Tawau MP Datuk Chua Soon Bui urged the National Registration Department to set up a mobile task force on the plight of genuine Malaysians, particularly Sabahans in rural areas seeking proper identification papers.

These documents could greatly help them exercise their rights as Malaysians, she said, during a recent visit to Kampung Ranggu.

She regretted reports of some families having to travel all the way to Kota Kinabalu to obtain the proper documentation, which is not only costly but time consuming.

"This is not practical for them as they are mostly poor families and travelling to Kota Kinabalu is a costly affair for them," she said while conducting a survey on the number of hardcore poor families in the village.

She expressed optimism that the newly appointed Sabah NRD Director, being a Sabahan, would be able to understand the situation and take the necessary measures to assist them.

"There is also a need to bring translators as there are a number of the older generation who could only speak their native dialect, such as Murut individuals," she said.

Citing an example, she described the dilemma faced by one Zakariah Mariano, a Kadazan man living in Ranggu village with his wife of Murut race. Chua said they used to live at Sungai Burung but their home was burnt down by fire resulting in the destruction of their identification documents.

Chua added that their five children, with the oldest being 12, face hardship at being deprived of the privileges given to Malaysian children as none of them possessed birth certificates and being deprived from obtaining education. She also said that this was just the tip of an iceberg.


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