Thursday, February 11, 2010

'Neither here nor there' man jailed

Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia - A man who declared himself as a subject of the "Sultanate of Sulu" was jailed a year and ordered to be given three strokes of the rotan by the Session Court, Wednesday, for illegal entry.

Titing bin Imam, 29, from Kg Tambalang, was penalised under Section 6(1)(C) of the Immigration Act for failure to procure identification papers.

What he had was a small piece of laminated paper which stated that he is a "citizen of the Sultanate of Sulu".

Titing told the court he was neither a citizen of Malaysia nor Philippines but from a country called "Tausuk". He said the document he possessed served as his birth certificate, his identification card and passport.

"I am a citizen of Sulu. I am not Filipino nor Moro. My language is Sulu and my lord is the Sultan of Sulu."

Upon hearing his conviction from the High Court Deputy Registrar Zaini Fashir, Titing exclaimed: "Why my lord? I am innocent. I have produced all that I had. My nationality is that of Tausuk."

Also arrested together with him on Nov 22, 2008, were four others.

Their offence falls under Section 6 (3) of the Immigration Act and they are allowed to appeal.

Prosecuting officers Rosli Sulaiman and Jaesman Gipin of the Immigration department stated that this was the first such case they had encountered. A similar fate awaits those who belong to a nation that does not exist. (Daily Express)


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