Selangor Ruler’s private secretary shoots down state PAS’ account of royal audience

KLANG: Selangor Ruler Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah’s private secretary Datuk Mohamad Munir Bani has shot down a statement on Selangor PAS commissioner Datuk Dr Ahmad Yunus Hairi’s recent audience with the Ruler.

In a statement issued Friday (June 17), Mohamad Munir Bani refuted Selangor PAS secretary Roslan Shahir’s statement about the audience that was published in several online news portals.

The articles suggested there were no problems between Selangor PAS and the Ruler after the audience.

The articles quoted Roslan as saying Sultan Sharafuddin had wanted to know PAS’ stand on the Bon Odori festival.

Roslan had also reportedly said Sultan Sharafuddin had given his views and that PAS had conveyed to the Ruler that it respected his stand.

“This statement is inaccurate and did not happen when Dr Yunus had an audience with His Royal Highness the Sultan of Selangor,” Mohamad Munir said.

Dr Yunus had the audience with Sultan Sharafuddin on June 16.

Mohamad Munir went on to say that Sultan Sharafuddin had merely stated his stand on not preventing the Bon Odori festival, which to the Ruler was just a cultural event.

“His Highness also does not prevent Muslims from attending it until a thorough study is carried out to determine if the festival is religious or cultural to prevent confusion among the people, especially Muslims,” he added.

Mohamad Munir said Selangor Islamic Religious Council chairman Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Mohd Yusof, Tengku Datuk Ramli Alhaj Tengku Shahruddin and Datuk Salehuddin Saidin, who were all members of the Selangor Royal Council, had also been instructed to be present to witness the audience at Istana Bukit Kayangan.

The Bon Odori festival had been held in Selangor for decades as a platform to inculcate goodwill between Malaysians and the Japanese community, as well as businesses present in the state.

The event had been going on without a glitch until recently when PAS vice-president Datuk Idris Ahmad, who is Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Religious Affairs), dropped a bombshell that Muslims should not attend the Bon Odori festival as it had elements of another religion.