Culprits selling titles should confess wrongdoings, says Kempas assemblyman

Ahmad Fairuz Othman and Rizalman Hammim

JOHOR BARU: An assemblyman here has urged for the culprits involved in the titles for sale to come forward to admit to their wrongdoings.

Kempas assemblyman Datuk Tengku Putra Haron Aminurrashid Jumat said the act of putting a price tag and dispensing the country's honorific titles and medals for a fee has tarnished the image of these high honours.

"The people deserve to know who have succeeded in securing the titles for money and which of the culprit or royal household responsible for this gross miscarriage of the country's highest honours.

"Those who have been proven to be guilty of buying the titles should henceforth be stripped of them with immediate effect while the royal recommender or receiver of the bribe should be revealed.

"The persons may have immunity from conviction or be granted a pardon. But the people must see them for who they really are," said Haron on his blog "The Patriot" last night.

He was commenting on the case of a 54-year-old Tan Sri who surrendered himself to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission last Friday for investigation over the title for sale case.

The New Straits Times' front page report yesterday revealed that the man, who has strong connections in several states, charged business tycoons up to RM5 million for a “Tan Sri” title.

Sultan of Johor Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar revealed in an exclusive interview with the Media Prima Bhd Group last month that the man claimed that the ruler had a quota of Tan Sri titles to give out and that he might as well make a profit from it.

Haron said it was unbecoming for anyone to attempt to bribe the Johor's ruler.

He said the country's honours must never be put up for bidding as it would diminish the dignity of the "Negaraku Initiative".

He said the purchase and sale of honorific titles from states were an open secret, but the Sultan Ibrahim's revelation proved that the honour of federal titles was compromised by such culprits.

"Honorific titles should be reserved for those who have served the country with honours and not sold to high bidders.

"Many have died and were maimed in the line of duty to defend this country and have medals less befitting of their deeds pinned on their coffins," said Haron.