Nazri seeks free legal aid for Sarawak poor

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2009/8/15/nation/4523733&sec=nation

Saturday August 15, 2009
Nazri seeks free legal aid for Sarawak poor

MIRI: Minister in the Prime Ministers Depart-ment Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz wants the poor and marginalised rural folks in Sarawak to be accorded justice literally speaking.

He has called on lawyers in the state to play a role in this, by giving free legal aid to those who were facing problems with government departments and agencies in the cities.

The poor and marginalised must be accorded free legal service at any time. I will issue an advisory to the Bar Council in Sarawak to provide free help to those rural folks who are in need, especially the Penans and the Orang Ulus.

I will ask the Bar Council to advertise this matter publicly and to let all the rural folks know about this, he said in an interview here.

Nazri was asked to comment on claims by stateless natives that they faced enormous problems when dealing with government departments as they had no birth certificates or MyKads.

A Penan family from ulu Baram had recently claimed that they were slapped with a bill of RM3,000 when they went to Kuching to seek medical help.

The Penan family did not have MyKads and the medical centre had claimed that they were charged the hefty amount as they were suspected to be foreigners.

Nazri is in Sarawak for a four-day official visit that will take him from here to Bintulu, Sibu, Sarikei and Kuching.

To a question, Nazri said he was satisfied with the level of infrastructure development and social progress he had seen so far in Sarawak.