In the land of scandals and corruptions, more often than not rumours have the nasty habit of turning out to become facts. After Mahathir Mohamad made the history of becoming not only the world’s oldest prime minister, but also the prime minister for the second time, Malaysians welcome the New Year 2019 with another stunning unprecedented moment – the King has resigned, effective Sunday (Jan 6).
Four days ago (Dec 3), the gullible Kelantan government created unnecessary attention when the state, ruled by PAS Islamist party, idiotically demanded the Attorney General’s Chambers to act immediately to stop the so-called fake news on the social media that the country’s “Yang di-Pertuan Agong (Supreme Ruler, or simply the King)”, was about to abdicate the throne.
Obviously panicked, the state government was reduced to mocking A.G. Tommy Thomas, as if the country’s attorney general was sleeping on the job, for not taking action to contain the rumours and speculations. Amusingly, even the Kelantan Deputy Chief Minister Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah wasn’t sure if the rumours of the King giving up his throne were genuine or otherwise.
While the boastful Mohd Amar bragged that his government enjoys a close relationship with the King, the Sultan Muhammad V of Kelantan, he could not enlighten the 32-million Malaysians what had happened, or where was the monarch, after the King had taken a two-month break from November 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018 – supposedly due to health reason.
Even after Sultan Nazrin of Perak, who is also Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong, officially ended his duties on Dec 31, 2018 as Acting King, Sultan Muhammad V was nowhere to be seen. It would take the wild goose chase to the rumours of the monarch renouncing the throne as the country’s 15th King that he finally made an appearance on Friday (Jan 4, 2019), performing his prayers.
However, the Kelantan Sultan, one of nine Malay Rulers of the nine Malay states, had already set tongues wagging when the supposedly sick leave turned out to be a wedding ceremony for the 49-year-old monarch. The news of his marriage with the beautiful 25-year-old Oksana Voevodina – Miss Moscow 2015 – splashed all over the world news, except the local mainstream media.
Curiously, there was no official confirmation or denial of the marriage from the Palace (Istana Negara) ever since Sultan Muhammad V began his medical leave and the revelation of his wedding photos. The Kelantan state government was caught with their pants down, neither can confirm nor deny the royal wedding, leading to naughty rumours of the abdication of the throne.
But you knew something spicy was cooking when the PAS Islamist party played dumb – refused to acknowledge that the state and country was going to have a new queen from Russia. The Conference of Rulers – comprising the nine Malay Rulers, and governors of the other four states – normally meets three times a year to deliberate on matters of national policy.
Therefore, you certainly could smell something explosive when a very rare and unscheduled meeting among the Malay Rulers took place – on Wednesday night – hours before the Kelantan state government screamed their lungs out that it was fake news the King was about to surrender the throne. A source, however, confirmed that a “serious” discussion was held over a matter regarding the monarchy.
The biggest hint that the King’s status was on shaky ground was when Prime Minister Mahathir failed to present the cabinet papers as usual to the King on Wednesday (Jan 2), presumably because Sultan Muhammad V wasn’t available to perform his duty. On the very same day, the frustrated Mahathir published an article on his blog entitled “Rule of Law”.
Mahathir wrote – “The rule of law applies to everyone, from the rulers to the prime minister and ministers, to civil servants and ordinary citizens. There is no provision which exempts anyone from the rule of law. For the rulers, there is a special court, but the laws are the same as the laws applicable to ordinary citizens. The rulers too must respect the laws.”
The 93-year-old premier said it was disturbing to see blatant breaches of the law being perpetrated in the mistaken belief that immunity had somehow been accorded, obviously targeting the monarchy. In essence, Sultan Muhammad V who was chosen as the 15th King from Dec 13, 2016 for a period of 5 years, was also the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces.
Now that the rumours of the Sultan of Kelantan abdicating his throne as the King has become facts, the new rumours as to why he was forced to “resign” has set tongues wagging again. Yes, the rumour mill has been churning about the King being given an ultimatum by the Council of Rulers to either exit in grace or be sacked in disgrace for reasons yet unknown.
According to the Malaysian Insight, only 2 Malay Rulers – Sultan of Selangor and Johor – had defended the King in their extraordinary and rare meeting, while the other 5 Rulers agreed the King should step down (Sultan of Pahang could not vote as he is incapacitated while the Kelantan royal household did not attend by virtue of the King is the Sultan of Kelantan).
Interestingly, just before the King was forced to resign, former A.G. Mohamed Apandi Ali had defended the Sultan of Kelantan, whose close relationship with former PM and world’s biggest crook Najib Razak is a public knowledge. Apandi claimed that the King cannot be removed just because he married a foreigner – the first admission about the royal marriage.
Of course, coming from a corrupted attorney general who had cleared Najib of any wrongdoing with regard to RM2.6 billion (US$681 million) worth of money stolen from 1MDB fund, it doesn’t take a genius to tell that Mr. Apandi’s legal advice isn’t worth a dime. The Malay Rulers were uneasy with the arrangement and the possible coronation of Russian beauty Voevodina as Queen.
And it certainly doesn’t take a rocket scientist to tell how damaging it would have on the Royal Institution as the King’s new Russian wife was reportedly had participated on a reality TV show taking part in a steamy scene – having sex – in a swimming pool. It would be extremely humiliating, not to mention insulting to the country’s Monarchy and the Islamic values, to recognise Voevodina.
There were also rumours on the internet that the King was addicted to two common things that had brought down many other rich and famous individuals – drugs and sex. Allegedly, he was supposed to be on leave and attend rehabilitation program, like Harvey Weinstein, but ended up marrying the Miss Moscow in a lavish wedding ceremony instead. That probably also explains his visit to a fertility clinic in Germany.
Regardless of the reasons Sultan Muhammad V abdicates the throne as King, all signs point to the monarch having committed grave misconducts, so much so that even his fellow Malay Rulers could not accept him as the King anymore. In the history of the country, Kings have died while in office, but never have stepped down “voluntarily”, until today.
Heck, even before his adventure in Russia, the King had courted controversy when Kadir Jasin revealed that the federal government under the previous Najib regime had allocated RM256.9 million from January 2017 to April 2018 for the King’s facilities and amenities, suggesting that Najib Razak had used “cash is king” to control the King.
As the prime minister’s mouthpiece, Kadir’s bold accusation was seen as a warning shot to the spendthrift monarch to behave, leading to a short crisis between the new Mahathir government and the Palace over the nomination of a non-Malay candidate – Tommy Thomas – to be the new Attorney General, replacing the crooked and corrupted A.G. Apandi Ali.
The swearing in of Mahathir as the 7th Prime Minister of Malaysia was without drama, when the old man, a year older than Queen Elizabeth II, was made to wait for hours until he was finally sworn in late at night on May 10 by the King. Ironically, the same King resigns before Mahathir’s own resignation to make way for PM-in-waiting Anwar Ibrahim.
Source : Finance Twitter