|Palace and the Menteri Besar Inc in business alliance?|
TTDI, 2 Oct 20: And so we have to ask again the tired question: should our kings and queens and their princes and princesses be in business and compete with the ordinary rakyat and their ordinary companies for projects?
But if they aren't in billion-ringgit businesses, how then are they to finance their lifestyles? Are we, the ordinary people, paying enough taxes to the Government to enable it to underwrite the expenses of the Royalty? Remember, we are not talking about one royal household or a single istana here. Nine of the states in Malaysian have monarchies and these sultans elect, quinquennially, a Yang DiPertuan Agong or the King.
Because they are our sultans and sultanahs and permaisuris, we Malaysians - we who love our royalties to bit -, we want them to have all the worldly comforts befitting of stature as our masters (tuankus): colossal palaces, scores of luxury cars in their garages, yachts and planes and even trains, the best things that money can buy.
But allowing kings and princes to aspre to be tycoons like Ting Pek Khiing, Syed Mokhtar AlBukhary or Anantha Krishnan, however, is simply wrong. In my opinion, that not only cheapens the sanctity of the Istana but exposes the members of our Royalties to pitfalls and risks associated with financial failures, including bankruptcy. Totally unnecessary. It may also open them up to bad press, not to mention bad company.
It's bad enough we have greedy politicians - and corrupt civil servants - forming unholy alliances with unscrupulous businesses. We need to protect the good name of the Istana and remind the Royalties that they really have no business to be in business.