A Brief History
In March 1951, the British colonial ruler made a historic change by introducing the Member System.
It was at this time that the portfolio or department known as the Department of Home Affairs, which is now known as the Ministry of Home Affairs, was set up. To date, the Ministry of Home Affairs has undergone numerous name changes from the Department of Home Affairs to Ministry of Interior and Justice, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Internal Security and now the Ministry of Home Affairs.
At the time of its formation, the Department of Home Affairs was responsible for nine government offices and agencies. They were the Broadcasting Office, Co-operative Development Office, Film Unit, Immigration Office, Information Office, Pilgrimage Office, Registration Office, Orang Asli Welfare Office and Rural and Industrial Development Authority (RISDA).
The first member for the Department of Home Affairs was Dato Sir Onn bin Jaafar (former Menteri Besar of Johor and the first president of the United Malays National Organisation or UMNO).
Following the first Federal Election on 27 July 1955 and the overwhelming victory of the Alliance Party (a coalition of UMNO, MCA and MIC), Tuanku Abdul Rahman Putra was appointed the Chief Minister of the Federation of Malaya as well as the Minister of Home Affairs on 9 August 1955. At the same time, the Member System was abolished and replaced with a Minister System. With this change, the Department of Home Affairs was renamed the Ministry of Home Affairs.
As the Minister of Home Affairs was also the Chief Minister, a junior minister was appointed to manage the Ministry of Home Affairs. Mr Bahaman bin Shamsudin was appointed as the Junior Minister of Home Affairs on 9 August 1955.
When the Federation of Malaya achieved independence on 31 August 1957, Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra was appointed as the first Prime Minister as well as the Minister of Home Affairs and Minister for Internal Defence and Security. At the time, the Ministry of Home Affairs was responsible for nine departments, which were the Broadcasting Department, Civil Defence Department, Immigration Department, Information Department, Pilgrimage Affairs Department, Printing Department, Prisons Department, Registration Department and Statistics Department. It also served as the Economic Secretariat.
In July 1958, the Ministry of Home Affairs was revamped and renamed the Ministry of Interior and Justice. Subsequently, Dato Suleiman bin Dato Abdul Rahman was appointed as the Minister of Interior and Justice in September 1957.
In August 1959, the Ministry of Interior and Justice was split into the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Justice. The departments placed under the responsibility of the Ministry of Interior were the Orang Asli Affairs Department, Chemistry Department, Fire Department, Local Government Department, Government Printing Department, Prisons Department, Registration Department and Town and Country Planning Department. The Ministry of Justice was responsible for the Judiciary, Attorney-General, Public Trustee and Custodian of Enemy Property.
On 1 August 1962, the Cabinet was reshuffled whereby Dato Dr Ismail bin Dato Abdul Rahman was appointed as the Minister of Internal Security as well as the Minister of Interior. In 1965, the Ministry of Internal Security was abolished upon its merging with the Ministry of Interior, which led to the formation of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
However, on 1 June 1967, Tun Dr Ismail bin Dato Abdul Rahman resigned from his post and was replaced by Tun Abdul Razak bin Dato Hussein as Minister of Home Affairs besides serving as the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Rural and Regional Development and Minister of Defence.
Following the bloody episode of 13 May 1969, a state of emergency was declared and the National Operations Council (NOC) was formed to administer the country with Tun Abdul Razak as its Director. On 20 May 1969, Tun Dr Ismail returned as a member of the Cabinet and was appointed as the Minister of Home Affairs. Subsequently, on 23 September 1970, Tun Abdul Razak formed his own Cabinet, which was made up of 18 ministers and 7 junior ministers or deputy ministers. Tun Dr Ismail was appointed as the Deputy Prime Minister as well as the Minister of Home Affairs.
On 13 August 1973, Tan Sri Muhammad Ghazali bin Shafie was appointed as the Minister of Home Affairs replacing Tun Dr Ismail who passed away on 2 August 1973, while Datuk Abdul Samad bin Idris was appointed as the Deputy Minister. In 1977, the Ministry of Home Affairs was responsible for six departments, namely the Royal Malaysian Police, Immigration Department, Registrar of Societies, National Registration Department, Prisons Department and Orang Asli Affairs Department. It was also responsible for psychological war and the Voluntary Home Guard, which was later renamed the Peoples Volunteer Corps or RELA.
In 1979, another department, the Central Narcotics Bureau, which was previously under the supervision of the Law Ministry, was placed under the responsibility of the Ministry of Home Affairs. In 1980, a secretariat was formed to facilitate the administration of the Narcotics Bureau and it became one of the several divisions under the ministry. This Narcotics Secretariat later came to be known as the Drug Secretariat, which served as the secretariat to the Executive Action Unit.
The latest development in the Ministry of Home Affairs occurred in 1981 when another division known as the Rehabilitation and Psychological Division was formed.
After Tan Sri Muhamad Ghazali bin Shafie, Dato Musa Hitam was appointed as the Minister of Home Affairs from 17 July 1981 until 16 March 1986. He was also the Deputy Prime Minister at the time. Later, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who was also the 4th Prime Minister, took over the portfolio of the Minister of Home Affairs starting from 17 March 1986 until 10 January 1999.
Beginning from 14 January 1999, Dato Seri Abdullah bin Haji Ahmad Badawi headed the Ministry of Home Affairs until 27 March 2004. On the same date, the Ministry of Home Affairs was split into the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Internal Security.
Dato Azmi bin Khalid headed the Ministry of Home Affairs from 27 March 2004 until 13 February 2006.
The Ministry of Home Affairs is one of the most important and senior ministries which is responsible for ensuring that the policies, laws and regulations on citizenship and national registration are in line with the current needs and interests of the country.
In view of these heavy duties and responsibilities, the ministry continues to improve the quality of the services it provides to the people and country in line with the policy of People Friendly Services and to strive to be an exemplary ministry of excellence, glory and distinction.
On 14 February 2006, a reshuffle of the Cabinet was announced by the Prime Minister, Dato Seri Abdullah bin Haji Ahmad Badawi, whereby Dato Sri Mohd Radzi bin Sheikh Ahmad was appointed to head the Ministry of Home Affairs
Because of the tasks and responsibility are heavy, therefore the Ministry of Home Affairs is always striving to improve the quality of service for the society and nation in line with the policy of People Friendly Service and continue to make this an exemplary Ministry as well as being Excellent, Glorious and Renowned.
On 14th February 2006, a reshuffle of the Cabinet was announced by the Malaysian Prime Minister Y.A.B. Dato Seri Abdullah bin Haji Ahmad Badawi, where there was a change and Y.B. Dato Sri Mohd Radzi bin Sheikh Ahmad was the head of the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The Ministry of Home Affairs was formed on 18 March 2008 following a Cabinet reshuffle after the 12th General Election. It was the result of the merger of two ministries, i.e. the Ministry of Internal Security and Ministry of Home Affairs. Both these ministries were once split up on 27 March 2004.
Following the merger, several changes to the organisational structure and division of duties as well as posts were made. Currently, the Ministry of Home Affairs is headed by a senior minister and two deputy ministers. In terms of management and administration, the ministry is led by a secretary-general who is assisted by three deputy secretaries-general and 25 divisions. Each deputy secretary-general heads a sector made up of several divisions which in turn are headed by the respective undersecretaries.
In addition, there are eight departments and agencies including a government company placed under the ministry and is directly responsible to the secretary-general, namely the Royal Malaysian Police, Department of Immigration, Registration Department, Prisons Department, National Anti-Drug Agency, Registrar of Societies, Department of Civil Defence and Percetakan Nasional Malaysia Berhad