Malaysia’s First Lady in a Controversy Again

June 16, 2016

Malaysia’s First Lady in a Controversy Again

by Mariam Mokhtar

Malaysia’s First Lady Rosmah Mansor

The furore over Rosmah Mansor’s use of a private jet to fly to Turkey last month has revived a question that was asked many times in the not-too-distant past: “Who is entitled to use a government jet or a private jet chartered by the government?”

Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein has a lot of learning to do. He has been strident in his defence of the Prime Minister’s wife, who went to Turkey in a luxury Airbus A-319 to pick up an award.

The cost of the lease – RM86.4 million – was paid by taxpayers. This is what Hishammuddin has pretended not to understand. It is the rakyat’s money, not UMNO-Baru’s.

If it had been Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s own money, or money donated by Hishammuddin, no one would care. Surely Hishammuddin knows that every sen of taxpayers’ money must be accounted for.

Apparently, this was not the first time, as a government jet was allegedly used in 2014 to pick up an award in Padang, Indonesia.

The authorities knew that this latest exposé was damaging. Rosmah’s aide, Rizal Mansor, claimed that she had a tight schedule. If time was short, why didn’t the Malaysian Ambassador to Turkey pick up the award on her behalf instead?

In any case, what is wrong with the newly revamped national carrier, Malaysia Airlines Berhad? Any Malaysian citizen would be proud to fly the flag for Malaysia.

Hishammuddin tried to deflect the public’s attention by criticising former PM Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who had flown to Ipoh in a private jet. Mahathir went there to take part in the Kuala Kangsar by-election campaign.

For a start, was Mahathir’s flight paid for by the taxpayer? If it wasn’t, Hishammuddin has really lost his sense of reason. If it was paid for by the rakyat, did it cost several million ringgit? If it was a government jet, why was Mahathir eligible to use it?

Government records are not transparent and the public outrage over the trip to Turkey is a direct result of that opaqueness.

So we come to the vital question: “Who is entitled to use a government jet?” For a start, how many government jets are there? How much is spent on them? Who has been using them and for what reason?

We are often told that government jets are for use by the ministers and the group of people known as VVIPs, meaning royal personages, like the Yang diPertuan Agong. Who else, apart from the King and his consort, are considered to be VVIPs entitled to fly on a government jet? Would the King’s niece or his aunt be eligible? Does the Lord Chamberlain get to use the jet?

Does the Malaysian government have a list of persons qualified to be called VVIPs? It is alleged that Najib’s daughter was also on the flight to Istanbul. Is her name in the entitlement list?

Rizal only made matters worse when he tried to justify the presence of the many suitcases in the luxury jet’s cabin. He said the fuel tanks had taken up too much space. So we’re asking, “What did those bags contain?”

Mariam Mokhtar is an FMT columnist.








13 thoughts on “Malaysia’s First Lady in a Controversy Again

  1. Self proclaimed 1st lady buat hal lagi.
    Dia yang berbuih mulut nasihat rakyat jimat cermat dan berhemah berbelanja.
    Laki bini sama cakap mcm tepi longkang. Tak blh pakai. Kalau nak act pun pakai la duit sendiri ke duit laki ke. Ini tidak rakyat yang menderita bela pungkok dia.

    Ingat la sama kisah khalifah omar abb aziz nak pakai lampu kerajaan bincang hal keluarga pun takut berdosa.

    Orang boros itu adalah bersaudara dgn syaitan.

    Dalam islam perbuatan org mukmin ada batas2nya. Kalau langgar batas maka jawablah besok di akhirat.


    Mengucap2 la sama dgn ber istighfar.

  2. Malaysia is a land full of VVIP’s what with Tunship, Tan Sri ship first class and second class, Datoship first class, second class and (is there a third class?) along with all the Dato Seri, Dato Wira, and the plain vanilla Datuk. On top of that many aspiring politicians nowadays buy their academic credentials and trot around calling themselves Dr. Or Professor even with an honorary doctorate.
    Malaysia also holds the record for having 9 Kings and 4 Governors who are everyday folks or retired politicians and accorded almost royal like privileges. Many foreigners are confused when I tell them that we change King every 5 years but keep same Prime Minister for 22 years.
    For a small nation Malaysia has the most VIP aircrafts at the government disposal. Government Ministers don’t like to travel on commercial airlines any more even if it cost a fraction of the cost for such a short distance between east and west Malaysia. Not sure how busy these Ministers are that require them to fly on a private jet as opposed to taking a commercial airline. Very often it is just to attend of officiate a building or program and to have lunch or dinner. I once dated at a wedding dinner where a VIP was boasting that he just flew in from Sabah where he had lunched on a RM400 a kilo fish and had to take the private jet just to be in time for this wedding dinner and he wasn’t even seated at the main table.

  3. Why hesitate at this juncture? Malaysia’s Imelda Marcos except the husband is a bad liar.

    The thing about Najib is his lying are bad but so many, most smarter than him, just keep him following him down his cesspool. Being a sycophant is one thing but so many suicidal sycophant? Aren’ t they into it ultimately for themselves? Why self- inflict themselves for really a bad bet? Because they think their own colleagues and team mate are worst than who they are.

  4. Spot on semper fi, we have too many goons going around with honorific titles they don’t truly deserve, let alone earn them. But the fault is us for according them the respect. I don’t have to go far. My peers are titled and some have more than one datukships. But what sickens me most is when they start calling one another, not by names but by their titles – datuk this and datin that. How superficial. I almost puke each time they call one another. I keep reminding them that they cannot take their ranks and titles to their graves. So to hell with your pretensions and egoism.

  5. A world of ‘imagination ‘ , pretensions , and artificiality are what We in this part of the world fancy about – not realities …….

    ( Tak ) Akan Melayu hilang di- dunia ? , di-Akhirat kelak akan juga Terlepas…..?

    Easiest way to the ‘ top ‘ is by Pretension , and they get recognized – those who really slog like Semper fi & Dr Bakri Musa in Morgan Hill , why do people despise them ? ……what a paradox of life in a country we call our very own, which DISOWN the good people , and adorn themselves with glamour & falsities ? The titles and Honorific bestowed upon them is , no exaggeration . ‘ one mile long….still never enough……’ kind of mentality……Good show !

  6. Style mesti mau lah.

    It is not enough that you are newly rich and or acquired that VIP status, but must be known and shown far and wide that you are. If not what’s the point of it all, especially when you need to scrape and grovel and in some case tell blatant lies on someone else’s behalf to get it?

  7. What a shame our “First Lady” that what crony claim. Tax payer money is like a pocket money to her. She more powerful than PM ( Pengecut).

  8. Semper, this Melayu VVIP shit is actually what we consider ostentatious neo-feudalism. Instead of lembu. kambing, kuda or unta, we have Airbuses, Learjets and Boeing mah.. 86.4 million rental pun small change.

    Flamboyant, glamorous, bodacious, extravagant, flagrant in-your-face showiness. Style Mesti Ada and to hell (literally) with Rakyat Miskin Jijik complaints. You see, when One has the Rotund Profile of Bumper Mama and the Hairdo of a Mega Dimensions, One must have the luxury of a personal Pilot and Jet.

    How else to carry all those ‘queer’ stuffed suitcases, when the accompanying flunkies are all limited to one small piece of roller luggage?

  9. CLF, private jet supposedly ensure total privacy and also enable the VVIP to travel when and where he/she wishes, not according to the schedule of commercial airlines. Taking it a step further Immigration and Customs clearance are done remotely away from prying eyes. Who knows what they are bringing into and out of the country.mperhaps those bags are stuffed with US$ or Euros for deposit in Dubai or some other tax haven, in anticipation of a quick getaway. Perhaps stashed in Kazhakstan who knows.
    The excuse given by the aide Rizal Mansor that the baggage space were limited as the aircraft had to carry more fuel is hogwash. It is easier to install an external tank or pod for fuel instead of installing fuel tanks in the cargo bays.
    The question is why rent the aircraft for 2 months and why not just charter for particular trip. Nowadays there are many private jets that are available for charter for specific flights. For $ 86 mil, they should just charter the whole MAS Airbus A380 to fly to Istanbul and back and still have plenty left over. This will also help MAS bottom line. Guess when money is no objection, burn BN burn, the rakyat can continue to pay taxes.

  10. Tok Cik, at my son’s wedding reception,,the head table on stage had the bride and groom, 1 Tuanku, 2 Tuns, 4 Tan Sris and the rest were Datos. When the MCeee introduced the guests of honors, I was introduced as Encik. THe guests were wondering who this Encik was and what was he doing sitting to the main table.

    Yes it’s funny when they each address each other as Tan Sri or Dato and not by their name. I being untitled addressed them as you and I. They probably thought that I was a country bumpkin and guess I was excused. It’s like playing bumper cars,whichevern way you turn you run into a Dato. It was fun though to watch make make fools of themselves.

  11. ( May I continue a lil bit more, if it interests you ) –

    Why all the glamour cherished in their own fancies, imagination & pretensions ?

    Tell you why – Its this thing called ‘ Nafs ‘ the great desire for the Ego of self , Inflated ego ! If Man is unable or cannot accost these, it will Control ‘Man ‘ in the end destroy him…. .

    To battle the wicked Nafs, he is battling with all ‘others’ ( & the world ) to subdue them…, the insane mind want to dominate others , and many in the Muslim world get tricked by the concept of Jihad …overtly declaring war with ‘ kafirs ‘ , silly.

    There’s a verse in the translated copy of Muslim’s holy Book :

    ” The most excellent Jihad ( Holy war ) is that for the conquest of self ….”

    Another :

    ” That person is wise and sensible who subdueth his carnal desires and hopeth
    for rewards from God, and he is an ignorant man who followeth his lustful
    appetites , and with all this asketh God’s forgiveness ”

    ( moral : Conquest of the self , by far is the Victory for man, and Not conquering others by ‘ hate ‘ , so those who kill themselves in order to kill ‘others/kafirs ‘ , ARISE from hate in themselves….against their OWN self )

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