On March 20, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was kissed on the hand by Kuala Krau MP Dato’ Sri Dr. Ismail bin Mohamed Said before giving his opening statement to the media at Parliament. The whole situation was captured in a video.
Ismail abruptly approached the Prime Minister and put his lips on Tun M’s hands and apologised for giving a ‘pantun’ during one of the Q&A sessions in the Parliament. Earlier that day in the Dewan Rakyat, the Kuala Krau MP replied Tun M with ‘pantun’ when discussing the issue of UMNO MPs jumping into Bersatu
Ismail’s actions gained attention from the nearby crowd. DAP member and Jelutong MP Sanisvara Nethaji Rayer s/o Rajaji Rayer questioned Ismail about his unusual behaviour.
Ismail defended himself by saying he only did that in accordance with the 5th ‘Rukun Negara’ (National Principle), which is Courtesy and Morality. Plus, it is deemed as a common custom amongst the Malay community.
Naturally, netizens had their say on the situation. From comments saying Ismail is a ‘kiss-up’, to most people defending him saying it’s just a traditional custom.
The situation may look awkward when it happened, but is something like this worth that much attention? Or do people see another motive behind it?