MOST Malaysians will be wondering what the Johor ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar would do the moment he is installed as the next Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA).
As highlighted, people especially the more pragmatic Chinese community have high hopes in the 17th Agong come Jan 30.
It is therefore, fair enough for people to ask what the new YDPA will do during his five-year term. A few things can be predicted based on His Royal Highness’ past records and the usual things a monarch would do after ascending the throne.
Known to be concerned about his Bangsa Johor, Malaysians can expect the YDPA to use the term, Bangsa Malaysia much to the chagrin of politicians who are opposed to DAP’s concept of Malaysian Malaysia.
It has yet to be established whether there is any difference between the two but technically, Bangsa Johor means essentially the same thing – a state where Johorians are made up of people from different ethnicity and religious backgrounds.
Several rounds of meetings
Sultan Ibrahim will inevitably call for several rounds of initial meetings with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (PMX) and the latter’s cabinet to get an update of the country’s state of affairs.
It goes without saying that one of the first persons he will ask is Local Government & Development Minister Nga Kor Ming whether he has been vigilant with living conditions at low-cost housing schemes nationwide.
In an earlier meeting with Nga, the Johor ruler has told the DAP Teluk Intan MP that he wanted to see efforts being put in to solve public housing woes in his home state.
However, when he takes on the role of YDPA, his scope will be so much larger, hence Nga would have to ensure that the cleanliness of low-cost housing schemes nationwide is well-maintained, facilities are repaired and upgraded throughout the country.
Potholes, illegal dumps, clogged drains, frequent flash floods and landslides which continue to plague the nation will occupy the media when the Agong raises it.
In at least one of the meetings, the Agong will go through each ministry what he expects to work into their key performance indicators (KPIs) that must be met. He is unlikely to tolerate any lip service from any minister and deputy minister. They have better to be on their toes if they do not want to receive a reprimand from the YDPA.
He will also not accept excuses that directives are not being executed by the public servants. At the same time, those within the public service who think they can overthrow an elected government would have to think twice from now on.
As the YDPA, Sultan Ibrahim wants stability for the unity government to carry on its duty. Like the current Agong Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, the Johor ruler would have heard the concerns expressed by the Bangsa Malaysia that they do not want a change of government every other year.
Building better Malaysia on the cards
As former police chief in Johor, Deputy Inspector-General of Police Datuk Seri Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay would probably understand what Sultan Ibrahim expects from him, especially in cases involving politicians who incessantly fan the 3R (race, religion and royalty) sentiments at will.
The key people who have to watch out are former twice premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, loose cannon Tan Sri Hadi Awang (PAS president), Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor and a number of PAS ulamak whose teachings went against the Malaysian monarch.
Both JAKIM and the Religious Affairs Minister Datuk Mohd Na’im Mokhtar will be tasked to monitor independent Islamic preachers who are out there to spew their venom and tear down the social fabrics with their teachings.
It is likely that the YDPA will be meeting with the people frequently to hear their woes. The ordinary rakyat can expect to meet and shake hands with YDPA at a very personal level as the sultan and his Tengku Mahkota are known for being people-centric.
Sultan Ibrahim is likely to listen to the many different views from his Bangsa Malaysia in order to offer the best solution that would bring a smile to everyone. In his reckoning, there is no winner or loser but a state of harmony between people of different races and religious affiliations.
In the next five years, there will hopefully be a time of religious and racial harmony as Sultan Ibrahim would be very strict with any politician who play up the sentiments to divide and rule.
Together with PMX, hopefully Sultan Ibrahim will be able to bring the nation back on track again where Malaysians can exist as one Bangsa Malaysia, yet maintaining the richness cultural and ethnic diversities. – Nov 17, 2023
Pics credit: Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar’s Facebook