A total of 9,539 citizenship applications were being considered by the government for approval as of September this year, says Home Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
He said the government through the home ministry was committed to considering every citizenship application fairly and equitably.
Saifuddin said the granting of Malaysian citizenship to non-citizens was the highest award to be given and an exclusive right of the federal government that was not arbitrarily offered or given.
He said the government had also completed the draft amendment to Part III of the Federal Constitution regarding citizenship, which would be presented to the Rulers’ Council this month.
"Also, today, I handed over the decision letters of citizen applications to 19 applicants," he told a media conference after attending a Madani home ministry programme at the Bandar Tun Razak Sports Complex in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
Saifuddin said the 19 applicants consisted of two categories, namely adopted children and naturalised residents.
"Naturalised status (the awarding of citizenship to non-citizens) is for those who have been resided for decades in Malaysia and who had applied for citizenship numerous times but failed in their bids," he said.
Saifuddin also said that the constitutional amendment process regarding citizenship was going smoothly, and that engagement sessions with stakeholders were ongoing.
"We are still gathering input and we hope to be able to present it at the next Parliament session.
"Under the home ministry, there are two amendments to be presented, regarding citizenship, and drugs and the abuse of substances under the National Anti-Drugs Agency," he said.