Mariam Mokhtar: Vigneswaran Wants to Reinstate the Full Powers of the Malay Rulers

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Some of you asked me, “Who is Vigneswaran?”

Earlier today, I shared an article on the outgoing Dewan Negara president SA Vigneswaran who had urged the government to reinstate the full powers of Malay rulers that were reduced by a 1993 Constitutional amendment.

In his farewell speech to the Dewan Negara, he said, “It is my wish, as the retiring Dewan Negara president, to call on the government to reverse the controversial 1993 amendments which are still hotly debated…. We should restore the powers of the Malay rulers to the time of independence.”

Azneal Ishak/Malaysiakini

He claimed that “…the powers of the Malay Rulers are very much needed in guaranteeing the political stability and future of the multi-racial community in this country…”

He claimed to have produced 72 pages of research on the matter.

So, who is Vigneswaran?

Vigneswaran is the MIC president and readers may recall the incident in November 2018 when he turned up at the KLIA VIP lounge, to send his daughter to UK, and had flouted security protocol. He had worn slippers and breached the strict dress code rules. He raised his voice at airport staff and entered the VIP lounge without a security pass.

Annabelle Lee/Malaysiakini

Despite violating safety regulations at KLIA, Vigneswaran refused to acknowledge that he was in the wrong.

When he was reprimanded by a member of the airport security, he became furious.

The airport staff were only doing their jobs. These VIPs fail to realise that should anything go wrong, the staff get into trouble.

First. If there had been a security incident, the security personnel would have been blamed for being irresponsible and allowing anyone to enter a restricted place.

Second. He broke the strict dress code for the VIP lounge. Wear slippers or go naked for all we care, but there is a time and place for these things.

Nightclubs, luxury restaurants and government departments have dress code, which should be respected, so why can’t Vigneswaran understand that the dress code must be followed?

Finally. At the time, Vigneswaran did not say he had anything wrong with his foot. When the story broke, he claimed that his leg had a wound. He must have been so traumatised, that he forgot he was in pain!

Vigneswaran violated the rules. Even leaders have to lead by example.

Today, he wants to reverse the constitutional amendments on rulers.

There are more important things to resolve, like institutionalised racism in Malaysia. Vigneswaran had to choose a topic that has little traction with the rakyat.

So, who put him up to this odd request?

Who is pulling his strings? – Rebuilding Malaysia