Made ‘illegitimate’ by red tape
MY wife and I went to the Registration Department in Shah Alam to get an IC done for our son who has turned 12.
All our children do not have “bin” or “binti” to their names in their birth certificates. The Registration Department Officer suggested that we include a “bin” in his IC.
We asked shouldn’t the name on the IC be exactly the same as that on the birth certificate?
He then proceeded to recite to us a new ruling, Perkara 13, presumably of the Department’s Regulations and Rules Book or By-laws, that says “an illegitimate child or a child born out of wedlock shall not bear the word ‘bin’ or ‘binti’ on his/her birth certificate or IC”.
Thus if we do not include “bin” on our son’s IC, he will be viewed as “illegitimate”.
We reiterated that we do not want our son’s name to be changed and his name on the IC must be exactly the same as that on the birth certificate.
The officer reminded us again of the consequences and possible repercussion of our request, the shame that we may put our son through in future, being mistaken for or viewed as illegitimate every time he uses his IC.
When we insisted, he relented, but asked us to sign some sort of declaration or consent form, which we did.
Now we have five “illegitimate” children in the family.
Is it fair to brand a child as illegitimate and subsequently make it publicly known and easily identifiable through the IC? The child through no fault of his/her own will have to live with that stigma all his/her life.
As a consequence of that ruling, too, legitimate children like ours are also wrongly categorised as “illegitimate”. On both counts, it cannot be right, morally or otherwise.
I hope the relevant authorities will do away with the ruling.