‘Rulers are above politics’

Perak Regent Raja Dr Nazrin Shah (left) speaking at Istana Iskandariah in Kuala Kangsar yesterday. With him Raja Kecil Besar Perak Raja Datuk Seri Iskandar Dzulkarnain (centre) and Perak finance officer Datuk Ghazali Jalal.

ROYAL REMINDER: Do not drag palace into partisan politics, says Raja Dr Nazrin

(NST) – ALL parties and groups with political leanings have been reminded not to drag the palace into their partisan politics just to shore up their image.

Perak Regent Raja Dr Nazrin Shah issued the stern reminder following actions taken by certain political quarters who manipulated the content of his royal addresses and speeches to push their own political agenda.

Without naming anyone but pointing out that he had been informed that such manipulation had been taking place lately, he said the tone of his speeches was altered to imply that it was he who had delivered them.

“This was done to increase the influence of the political groups and degrade their opponents.

“The act gives an incorrect impression and can create misunderstanding among a large number of people as though I have directly expressed support for a certain group and derided the other group.

“Any act that links my name and person to gain political support can actually be deemed as having dragged the palace into partisan politics.

“This is improper and has breached manners of civility and prudent political order,” he said in his address at Istana Iskandariah here yesterday.

He said this in his speech when officially launching “Meletak Kerja” (start of work) in conjunction with the upcoming Sultan Azlan Shah’s 85th birthday celebrations at Istana Iskandariah.

He said political parties and groups should not desecrate the nation’s cultural customs and traditions in the excitement of garnering political support.

“The royal ruler and the throne will remain above party politics, will be neutral and will not favour any political groups.”

He pointed out that the same message was stressed in the Perak Royal Council’s 151st meeting on March 12 where council members were reminded to be vigilant and careful with their words and actions so as not to misrepresent the role of the royal institution.

Council members had been reminded to reflect on their independent nature and not to be involved in programmes organised by political parties for their own political aims, he added.

“With the current political scenario becoming increasingly fragmented, council members need to be smarter and make intelligent interpretations so that the (Perak) royal institution and the (Perak Ruler’s) council are able to maintain an independent image and stay above partisan politics.

“The ruler has never expressed support for or against any political parties.

“I have instructed council members instead to take on the role of wise men who can play the role of mediators to resolve problems within the community.”