Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir yesterday sent a letter to the Sultan of Johor Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar to seek forgiveness for his mistake in not shaking hands with Sultan Ibrahim at Istana Abu Bakar, Pekan on Thursday (May 23).
In a statement, Mukhriz said in the letter, he had admitted to His Royal Highness that the mistake was due to his own negligence.
“This mistake also does not reflect the polite nature of the Kedah people,” he said.
Yesterday, a 14-second video featuring Mukhriz allegedly refusing to shake hands with the Johor ruler and his son, Tunku Mahkota Johor Tunku Ismail during the funeral ceremony in Pekan on Thursday of the fifth Sultan of Pahang Sultan Ahmad Shah Al Musta’in Billah.
In the video, Mukhriz was seen only raising his hand when it was his turn to shake hands with Sultan Ibrahim before shaking hands with Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah Sultan Ahmad Shah.
The clip also appeared on Tunku Ismail’s Twitter account.
Mukhriz’s actions received flak from netizens and also Johor Umno Youth who asked him to apologise to the Sultan of Johor.
Tunku Ismail responded with an emoticon of clasped hands after a tweet from Friends of Johor, accused Mukhriz as being arrogant.
“The difference between two men, @HRHJohorII (Tunku Ismail) shook Tun M’s hand but Mukhriz was too arrogant to shake SOJ’s (Sultan of Johor’s) hand at Istana Abu Bakar (in Pekan, Pahang),” read the tweet from the @FriendOfJohor twitter handle.
Friends of Johor also posted photographs showing both Sultan Ibrahim and Tunku Ismail greeting Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad at Istana Abu Bakar.
Speaker to reporters later, Mukhriz acknowledged that although unintentional his “carelessness” was no excuse for failing to stop and greet Sultan Ibrahim during the recent wake of the late ruler of Pahang.
He explained that his oversight was the result of him rushing through the greetings as Kedah ruler Sultan Sallehuddin Sultan Badlishah, who Mukhriz had been accompanying, was about to begin the prayer recital ceremony.
“His Royal Highness the sultan was already in front and was about to begin the prayer recital ceremony, so I wanted to rush to reach there, but I saw the Agong (Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah).
“So I salam (greeted) to express my condolences and continued (making my way forward).
“[…] Yes, it was unintentional but I can’t use the excuse…I should have stopped to greet (Sultan Ibrahim),” he said in a video uploaded onto the Mukhriz Mahathir fanclub Facebook page yesterday.