Application forms will be made available at any district office in Sarawak.

PETALING JAYA: Children of mixed parentage can own Native land and have Native or Bumiputera status recognition in order for them to enter public universities or tertiary institutions.

This will take effect from November 1, 2023 said Deputy Minister in the Sarawak Premier’s Department (Law, MA63 and State-Federal Relations), Datuk Sharifah Hasidah Sayeed Aman Ghazali.

Borneo Post quoted Sharifah as saying: “This is an important law in response to the numerous queries. With reference to the enforcement date of the Interpretation (Amendment) Ordinance 2022, in relation to the determination of Native status of any person, the government has decided that the date of enforcement of the said Ordinance is Nov 1, 2023.

“In line with the provisions of the Interpretation (Amendment) Ordinance 2022, the qualifying criteria is very simple.

“For any person to be recognised as a Native of Sarawak, he or she must be a Malaysian citizen; a natural born child of a person of a race indigenous to Sarawak; and one of his or her parents is a person of a race indigenous to Sarawak,” she elaborated during a press conference.

She stated that ‘Native’ also meant those having ‘Bumiputera’ special status and applications for native recognition can be made at any district office in the state, where forms will be made available.

A committee headed by State Secretary Datuk Amar Mohamad Abu Bakar Marzuki will be established by the state government to consider the applications.

“I am very confident that this law (amendment) can resolve issues and help to maintain public order,” she said.

Prior to this, Sharifah said that she tabled the amendment Bill on the matter at the State Legislative Assembly (DUN) and the Ordianance was duly amended, which gives the state the right to determine the Native status of Sarawakians, and those of mixed parentage.

“As of now, people just went to court, but from Nov 1, we shall have a special committee to handle applications,” Sharifah was quoted as further saying.