JOHOR BARU: Babies born or found at public places including toilets, bus stops and even sheds have to go through a lifetime of humiliation as their exact place of birth is stated in their birth certificates, says Johor Health and Environment exco member Datuk Ayub Rahmat.
He urged the National Registration Department (NRD) to be more considerate in naming the places of birth of such children, which are common among those born out of wedlock and others who are abandoned.
Ayub said the exact place of birth of these children was usually written in their birth certificates when parents register their children with the NRD.
“These children are stuck and have no choice but to write their place of birth as stated in their birth certificates whenever they fill up a form.
“This means if they were found in a ‘tong sampah’ (garbage bin) here, their birth certificate would state exactly that,” he added.
Ayub, who expressed his disappointment over the naming of the places of birth, urged the NRD to refrain from continuing with such practices. “We hope that the department would immediately look into this issue for the sake of the children involved,” he said after the launching of the Generasiku Sayang seminar here yesterday.
“It never used to be this way. But recently we have seen more and more of such children coming forward,” he said adding that the children themselves would be forced to face a lifetime of embarrassment.
“These victims will have to face humiliation even in other countries, as the place of birth is also clearly stated in their passports.
“Highlighting the exact location in the official documents is not only an act of discrimination but is also completely unfair to the innocent victims,” he said.
An NRD official, who was contacted about the matter, said the birth certificates of babies born or found at public places will list the location of where they were born. But the certificates would not record things such as “tong sampah” as the birth location.
Giving an example, the official said a newborn baby found in a surau at Kampung A would only have “Kampung A” listed as the birthplace.
“In deciding the location of the births to be listed in the certificate, the NRD will rely on evidence that could include things like the information contained in the police report lodged by the person who found the baby.
“However, if there have been instances where our personnel had recorded specific locations such as ‘tong sampah’, the child’s guardian can apply to the NRD to make an amendment,” she said.