THE approval process for permanent resident (PR) status following relaxation of the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme must be done carefully in view of the unresolved issue of the reported two million Chinese citizens over-staying in the country or have not returned to their homeland.
Coupled with a report by the Home Ministry that 54,000 applications to become Malaysian citizens have been received, it is not surprising that the opposition fraternity quickly capitalise on amendments to the eligibility criteria and financial requirements aimed at attracting a large pool of foreigners to incite nationalistic fears.
“We can accept that the applications are due to foreign births and spouses’ marriages, and we are aware that they can be expedited because the number is not large,” Shehdi Hazrik Samsudin, deputy director of Amal Selangor, a PAS Youth voluntary body, pointed out in a viewpoint appearing on HarakahDaily.
“It is understood that of the 54,000 applications, more than 17,000 have been processed hastily based on allocation of the minister’s authority … Not only that we should be more careful but there’s a need to also present a detailed report to Dewan Negara because this involves the country’s security.”
On top of that, Shehdi also stressed the need for the Home Minister to release a list on the number of application types in the Dewan Rakyat so that Malaysians are aware that those who are granted citizenship meet strict requirements.
“The question raised by netizens is how come the Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister suddenly have a say on matters pertaining to the granting of PR status when that should come under the purview of the Home Ministry or Immigration Department,” the PAS man asserted.
“If they wish to respond, government supporters need not defend the minister but suffice to give a clear understanding and explanation on the matter since we are talking about national security.”
Earlier, Shehdi also took a swipe at the Madani government for allowing high-income foreigners the privilege of enjoying state subsidies “at a time when its own T20 citizens are having their subsidies withdrawn in stages even though they are the country’s largest taxpayers”.
“The Madani’s government plans to pursue the path of bringing in indirect investors through the tourism sector with attractive offers to foreigners with property ownership in our country now reduced to only RM750,000 from the previous value of RM1 mil,” he argued.
“Not just bringing in a sum of fixed deposits into local banks, they are also given the option to buy real estate in our country to support the real estate sector but this is seen as competition for Malaysians who are still struggling to own their first home.” – Dec 20, 2023