Saturday, July 01, 2006

Recipients Of State Awards Reminded To Maintain Good Image

At last even His Majesty, who normally does not comment on subjects like this, has seen fit to advice the recipients of state awards. Imagine to what extent the recipients must have sullied their reputation, and by extension the awards, in order to deserve a rare Royal caution.

Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Syed Putra Jamalullail has advised recipients of awards conferred in conjunction with his birthday celebrations to always maintain a good image. The King said they must always look after their image at all times whether in terms of their performance in providing service to the people or the prestige attached to the title conferred.

"Don't think that after receiving the award, your (recipients') efforts in serving the people would stop immediately," he said in his royal address at the Royal Banquet organised by the Council of Perlis Datuk (JDDP) Friday night.

The King also said that the meeting of the Council of Rulers last year had decided that the title conferred to anyone who was later convicted by the court would be automatically withdrawn. Also present at the banquet were Raja Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Fauziah Tengku Abdul Rashid, the Regent of Perlis Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Syed Sirajuddin Jamalullail and Raja Puan Muda Perlis Tuanku Lailatul Shahreen Khalil Akashah.

While Federal Awards are relatively better vetted and scrutinised than state awards, even there we see a disproportionate number of multi-millionaires and billionaires who receive the highest awards like Tan Sri.

However it is the state award that is open to so much conjecture and doubt. The number of those receiving the Datuk or Dato' titles are sometimes ridiculously high as for example in Malacca and Pahang.

I remember reading a few years ago that after the last Umno elections where Malacca CM Ali Rustam was elected as a vice-president, a large number of those who were awarded datuk titles some days after the elections were Umno personalities.

However Rustam gave some bullshit about it being a 'coincidence', (that moron), but everyone else believed that he had paid off those who garnered votes for him. To add insult to injury one of the newly titled Datuks was arrested for some offence a few days later!

Almost every state has a poor history of giving datukships to undeserving and sometimes criminal types. Notorious apart from Malacca is Pahang. These states have become the butt of jokes when it comes to their reasoning for awarding ex-jailbirds and other nefarious characters. Can you blame the public if they are convinced that a lot of money has changed hands?

Therefore His Majesty's observation and caution is timely and let us keep watch especially in Malacca and Pahang if His advice is heeded.


Blogger Billy said...

This is something I have been thanking along for some time now. Even if I were to be recommended for a Datukship (which in all probability is most unlikely since I am not a millionaire), I would certainly like to turn it down, as I do not wish to be associated with a bunch of crooks and pseudo somebody. As time goes by, the "Encik" title will be getting fewer and fewer so much so that I rather be just another ordinary encik than a dubious Datuk. Incidentally, why is it so easy, especially, for a property developer to get datukship or a tan sri-ship?

4:24 PM GMT+8  
Blogger Pengundi Parlimen Bachok said...

Allow me to add my 2 sen worth of thought: I think Malaysians in general know in their heart of hearts that those honorific titles are a big joke! I have been wondering why someone like Mr. Lim Kit Siang or the late MGG Pillai is less deserving of any title even though if we dare to pick any meriteous criteria other than being a loyal supporter of UMNO, a lot of the present title holders would be put to shame.

In reality, who is exactly responsible for such awards? Why can the process be somewhat transparent and above politics?

The value of those titles rest with us, a common ordinary rakyat, NOT with anybody else.

Those with titles can danggle their medals in front of your face and be allowed to various VVIP spaces and cut in the line but this is how an empire begin its crumble descent and eventual decay -- those ruling elites are forgetting the interests of the masses, in this case, the majority of the rakyat without any titles to their names.

I also think such titles have passed its time. Time and present day events will be a big factor in deciding the uselessness and irrelevancy of such titles. Why are we so fixated with it is beyond me!

As for Islammic Handari, why in the Quran and Hadith that say cherish/respect/whatever the titles bestowed upon you by your ruling regime? So much for Malaysia being Islamic.

1:00 AM GMT+8  

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