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Published: Sunday September 18, 2011 MYT 4:02:00 PM

DPM denies Bangladeshi workers given fast-track citizenship

KUALA LUMPUR: Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on Sunday denied claims that Bangladesh workers in the country were being given citizenship so that they could become voters.

He said the Barisan Nasional government did not need to do this to ensure victory in the next general election.

"We can ask the Bangladeshi authorities if indeed such claims were made but we do not give fast-track citizenship to Bangladeshi workers.

“Any foreigner who wants Malaysian citizenship must fulfill various conditions, among them how long the person has lived in the country.

"We do not give special treatment to Bangladeshis. Especially when it is linked to elections. It is as though we are so desperate to win that we are asking foreigners to become citizens and asking them to vote.

“Furthermore, in the voting process, a voter drops his ballot in the box and no one knows who the person voted for," he told reporters after opening the Malaysian Makkal Sakti Party's annual convention at the Putra World Trade Centre here.

He was responding to reports that the NGO Affairs website of the Bangladesh Prime Minister's Office had carried an article quoting sources who claimed that Bangladesh workers in Malaysia were being given fast-track citizenship on the condition that they must vote for the ruling coalition in the next election. - Bernama

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