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Umno rep: TMJ's warning must apply to Johor tycoons

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After Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim issued a warning against those trying to get close to his father, the sultan, for personal interest, an Umno state assemblyperson said the caution should likewise apply to state's businesspersons.

The warning by Tunku Ismail in a Facebook post last Saturday appeared to have been directed at Umno , for it came a day after Umno vice-president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi met with the Johor sultan and later declared the monarch believed that only Umno can unite Malays.

However, in a blog posting today, Umno's Kempas assemblyperson Tengku Putra Haron Aminurrashid Jumat appeared to touch on a matter that has been a source of controversy for the Johor royal family.

There have long been criticisms of the major developments in the state, initiated mostly by Chinese businesspersons backed by the Johor royalty, which have seen mostly Malay villagers displaced or their livelihood affected.

"We highly respect the stand taken by his royal highness the crown prince of Johor and the caution to those who seek to become friends or be close with his royal highness the sultan for personal gains or political capital.

"As we are in no position whatsoever to speak on his royal highness' behalf, we hope that his royal highness (Tunku Ismail) caution applies not only to the politicians but also to the unscrupulous businessmen with the intent of 'printing money' in fast track motion in this robust and fast developing economy of the great state of Johor, who do not observe the sensitivities and the wellbeing of the rakyat, namely the Malays," Tengku Putra Haron ( photo ) said in his posting.

He reminded that it is the Malays who are most loyal to the Johor Palace.

He added this was based on observation of Chinese businesses, which did not observe the Johor sultan's coronation by continuing to operate, even though it was a public holiday.

'Chinese papers prefer Kuan Yew over sultan'

"And the Chinese dailies preferred news of the death of Lee Kuan Yew over our sultan's coronation on their front pages, just to name a few," Tengku Putra Haron said.

He said that the country has nine rulers and their princes, and if all of them stated their own political views, then they would end up contradicting one another.

He noted that some had taken to "being columnists in local tabloids leaning towards the opposition".

He warned that these contradictions could cause irreparable damage and lead to the disintegration of Malay unity.

"As it is, we have muftis going at one another, with contradictory statements read as edicts, confusing Muslims at large on the fundamentals of the religion and its view on leadership.

"Unless we can secure a united voice by the Conference of Rulers as the supreme institution in the country to our favour, I suggest we stay well clear of this avenue (of having royals in politics).

"We have to exhaust all other possible measures before we seek royal intervention," Tengku Putra Haron said.

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