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Published: Wednesday November 4, 2009 MYT 7:41:00 PM
By JACK WONG
KUCHING: Sarawak has sought the help of Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to address the issue of children of mixed parentage in the state who have supposedly been denied bumiputra status.
Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Alfred Jabu said he wrote to the Prime Minister on the issue several days ago.
He highlighted the case of SPM top scorer Marine Undau, whose application for a place in a matriculation programme was rejected because of her mixed parentage.
“I believe the Prime Minister can solve the problem,” he told reporters after performing the ground-breaking ceremony for the proposed RM220mil City One shopping mall project here on Wednesday.
Jabu said one way to address the issue was to amend the Federal Constitution.
Another Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr George Chan Hong Nam also backed the proposed amendments of Article 161(a) of the Federal Constitution which stipulates that for a child born in Sarawak to be classified as bumiputra, both his or her parents have to be bumiputra.
However, the Sarawak State Constitution states that a child is considered a bumiputra if one of his or her parents is a bumiputra.
Besides Undau, two similar cases involving Awang Adrian Awang Kasumar (SPM 10As scorer) and Daniel Ibau were highlighted by the media.
Several quarters have urged the Federal Government to standardise the different definitions of bumiputra status in Peninsula Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak as inter-racial marriages are common.
A child born in the peninsula will be accorded bumiputra status as long as one of his or her parents is a bumiputra. In Sabah, a child is classified a bumiputra if his or her father is one.
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