KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 10 — Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar has said that among his focus when he takes on the duty as the 17th Yang Di-Pertuan Agong is to stop corruption.
In an exclusive interview with the Singapore Straits Times, he said ensuring there is no disunity in the country will be his biggest challenge.
He said a stable government must be consistent, with a sustainable policy that is needed to fix the economy.
A key cause of political instability, he said, was “sour grapes” by those at the losing end.
“You know, people contribute hundreds of millions before elections. How do you pay them back? Giving them mega projects. That’s not going to be the case the moment I’m there. Too bad, who asked you to give?” he asked, referring to kickbacks.
“From my great-grandfather, we were great hunters. I make sure when I go hunting, I bring back nice game. But when I’m in KL, it’s a concrete jungle, so what do I hunt? I’m going to hunt all the corrupt people. I make sure I bring results,” he was quoted as saying.
He also suggested that the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission report directly to the Agong, instead of to Parliament as it does now.
“If it comes to the Agong, it means you are not under the influence of anybody from the executive. Even Petronas shouldn’t be under Parliament, report directly to me,” he said, referring to the state oil giant.
He also suggested that judicial appointments must “be separated from the executive — they must be independent”.
Judges are appointed by the king, on the advice of the prime minister after an appointment panel recommends candidates.
“We only get the list (from the Prime Minister’s Office) during the Conference of Rulers. Why don’t you bring the name down (to us) before you appoint? We are not a rubber stamp,” he reportedly said.
On October 27, the Istana Negara announced Sultan Ibrahim as the 17th Yang Di-Pertuan Agong, with Perak's Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah as his deputy.
Sultan Ibrahim’s five-year reign as Malaysia’s King will start on January 31 next year, with Sultan Nazrin's term also starting on the same day.