NRD withholds birth cert, boy can't go to school

ENSOL LANGGAYAT


KOTA KINABALU: A seven-year-old boy from Ranau without a birth certificate must be allowed to go to school first and foremost said Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment minister Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun.

The boy’s mother, Julitah Bahiau, had reported to the local media of her struggles to enrol her son, Aryton Verlando, in school, without the document.

According to the mother, the National Registration Department (NRD) had taken her son’s birth certificate after they (the parents) have requested the word “Islam” to be removed from the certificate.

The boy’s mother, who is a practising Christian, similarly has the word “Islam” on her identity card and has been fighting to remove it.

Masidi said the issue on the word “Islam”, which was mistakenly declared in the document, should be referred to Sabah Islamic Affairs Department (JAIS) and the Religious Affairs Department.

He stated that it is not up to the NRD to decide to withhold or to verify the certificate.

“We will have to get the religious department to verify it,” said Masidi after the launching of a solo exhibition by photographer Amri Ginang at the Sabah Art Gallery here.