PETALING JAYA – A political blogger has revealed that a petition purportedly started by Pasir Pinji assemblyman Howard Lee Chuan How (pix) seeking support to allow him to return to the United Kingdom has reached its 1,000 signature target after 10 years.
“It took Perak DAP asemblyman Howard Lee a few years to get 500 people to sign his petition. But thanks to the compassionate netizens in Malaysia, it took just two days to get the remaining 500 to help the YB to finally reach his goal of 1,000 signatures that could send him home to his beloved UK,” wrote Lim Sian See on his Facebook page on Saturday.
The petition has so far received 1,022 signatures, and hundreds of people that signed the petition were from Malaysia.
Several comments on the petition page urged Lee to leave Malaysia.
“Please help Howard get out from Malaysia,” wrote Dharif from Shah Alam.
“Balik England la (Go back to England). Why you contest as state assemblyman when you have decided to pledge your loyalty to a foreign country,” said Kenneth from Seri Kembangan.
Lim also shared two articles written by UK regional newspaper Eastern Daily Press in September 2007 that shared Lee’s visa wrangle and campaign to bring him back to Norwich.
One of the article also made reference to an “emotional video plea” by Lee on his plight.
The petition was created by Lee to appeal against the rejection of his visa that forced him to return to Malaysia.
Lee reportedly came to Norfolk in 1995 on a student visa and sent his passport to the British Home Office in 2002. He applied for British naturalisation.
It was not until a British parliamentarian got involved in 2005 that Lee discovered his naturalisation application had been denied in 2002 and the Home Office had no record of receiving his passport.
Lee left the UK and returned to Malaysia in 2007, and reportedly applied for a settlement visa to live with his British wife.
According to the Eastern Daily Press, a document from the British High Commission in Kuala Lumpur stated Lee’s application for a settlement visa was refused due to lack of evidence of past visas and whether he abided by their conditions.
Lee claimed all of this evidence is in the passport which he believes the British Home Office lost in 2002.
In a Facebook posting on Tuesday, Lee had denied acquiring citizenship from any other country.
Lee said his Malaysian citizenship is indisputable both in spirit and in law.
When contacted by The Star on Wednesday, Lee confirmed he stood for the Norwich City Council by-election, and pointed out that British laws allowed Commonwealth citizens to stand in local government elections in England and Wales.
When pressed on his alleged attempts to obtain a British citizenship, Lee declined to comment.