|Banned in Johor by royal decree? No, not this Vape!|
Ok, so I was having a bit of fun on Twitter yesterday after reading the news that HRH the Sultan of Johor had willed that vape to be banned in the state by 1 Jan 2016. So forgive me, or in the Melayu lingo of utter respect for the raja, ampun tuanku ...
But seriously, this is not the kind of things I wish the Istana would try to do. It is one thing for the Sultan to nicely advise the Rakyat not to vape because it's a health hazard or it's not cool or it's a waste of money and vaping leaves a bad influence on the kids. Just like or worse than smoking. Or bingeing. Or doing weed and drugs and beating up your wives and leaving them for dead. The Sultan's advice to the "subjects" will go a long, long way ...
But to actually issue a my-wish-is-your-order decree? Mmm.
|Gigars are sexier, no?|
Let's be clear about one thing: I don't vape so I don't really care if it's halal or haram in Johor or elsewhere.
But I disagree with this decree thing. What if the Sultan wakes up tomorrow morning and decides to issue another decree - SMOKING is banned (oh, I don't smoke, either) - and then another one the following morning? I am sure Tuanku Yem won't do that but someone else might. I am from Melaka, the former kingdom without a raja, but we have a Governor: what if the Governor wakes up tomorrow and decides he, too, wants to do decrees?
We are not Brunei or Saudi Arabia. This is Malaysia. Notwithstanding the Health Minister's response to the Johor Sultan's decree h e r e (Dr S Subramaniam is a Johorean, if you must know), the MoH is the correct authority to ban vape and the Ministry's position on vape is it would wait for scientific studies (Astro Awani, 28 Nov) on the pros and cos of vaping before making any official decision to ban vaping.
We should wait for a proper study to be done and then let the MoH issue its executive decree. If you disagree - and a lot of people will disagree, either way - you take it out on the Minister or the Ministry or, as is the practice these days, blame Najib Razak!
That way, you spare the Palace from yet another unncessary exposure to ridicule and scorn.