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THE National Registration Department’s (NRD) application to stay a recent Court of Appeal ruling on illegitimate children has been rejected, The Malay Mail Online reported today.

The NRD’s director-general had previously said the agency will continue with the status quo of affixing illegitimate Muslim children with “bin Abdullah” instead of following the Court of Appeal’s ruling in allowing the child to take the father’s name.

Lawyer for the child’s father, K. Shanmuga, said his client would not enforce the ruling on his child pending the Federal Court’s hearing of the NRD’s application for leave to appeal the decision.

Shanmuga, however, said the NRD should follow the Court of Appeal’s ruling and allow fathers to give their names to their acknowledged children.

The Court of Appeal in a landmark decision on July 25 allowed a child born less than six months after the parents’ marriage, considered as illegitimate in a fatwa issued by the National Fatwa Council in 2003, to take the acknowledged father’s name.

This was met with resistance by NRD and the Malaysia Islamic Development Department (Jakim), who said they will abide to the fatwa instead with, with Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi expressing support for their stances.

However, Bar Council president George Varughese said the ruling is legally binding until a stay of execution is obtained or until it was overturned by the Federal Court, with the two agencies risking contempt of court. – August 3, 2017.

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