Why would the Conference of Rulers extend an invitation to former PM, Dr Mahathir Mohd and then withdraw it, just a few days, before the ceremony to install the new Agong.
Didn’t we assume that the palace is above politics? Aren’t we told, day in day out, that the palace is above politics?
The Conference of Rulers cannot have issued an invitation and then withdrawn it. It would be too malu-fying.
So let us look elsewhere for a plausible explanation.
The Privy purse.
Have you heard of the privy purse?
In its simplest terms, the Privy purse pays the personal expenses incurred by royalty.
Kings and queens, sultans and sultanas, do not hold down “8-to-4” jobs, like you and I.
They perform a ceremonial role for the state and nation. They travel from A to B, have to receive another monarch or head of state, or represent Malaysia overseas.
There are royal houses to maintain, mouths to feed, the royal household, the courtiers and the domestic staff, have to be paid for their various duties. There are banquets to hold and ceremonial duties to perform.
The tab for all these is paid for by the Malaysian taxpayer.
We pay our taxes and it goes into a pool. The money in the pool, is controlled by the Finance Ministry, which after consultation with MPs and parliament, decides how much the royal households should receive.
The royal houses also have investments, land, and personal assets. I have limited knowledge on this suffice to say that the fancy cars owned by the royal houses, cost more than the monthly royal expenses, and must have been purchased from their personal income.
For purposes of this argument, the privy purse is managed by the Finance Ministry and who is the Finance Minister? It is MO1. He calls the shots
So, in all probability, the retraction of Mahathir’s invitation, MO1’s new found foe, was probably his instigation.
For the MO1 to embroil the royal household in politics and apply the screws like this, is stooping very low, indeed. The move will backfire.
NB: Please feel free to provide a better explanation on the Malaysian privy purse. You are most welcome to add to this or to correct me. Thank You.
Yup, we need to discuss sensitive issues and the question of how MO1 conducts Malaysian affairs is our business.
Remember, MO1 controls our money.
Without taxpayers’ money, there is no Finance Ministry or Finance Minister.
How would MO1 like it if we decided to withhold paying our taxes?