The Sultan of Johore is reported to have said that he does not agree with the construction of a third bridge linking Johore with Singapore, that was proposed by PM Najib recently.The proposed bridge was to be build on the South-Eastern portion of Johore, linking North-Eastern part of Singapore island. The Sultan must have his valid reasons for voicing his disagreement, and whatever the reasons, it ought to be respected.
I had in an article titled, 'The third link - From a defence view point' posted on May 24, 2009 argued that a defence consideration ought to be given a serious thought before deciding on the bridge construction. I personally felt that the third bridge is of no necessity, and my argument is primarily that from a defence perspective.
I believe the government, and whoever was the person to have mooted the idea of a third bridge, has made a serious mis-calculation, by assuming that the proposal was good for the state. When the announcement was made by PM Najib, we did not hear a murmur of disapproval from any UMNO politicians in the state, and I suppose it must be the usual 'saya sokong' that gave PM Najib the nod to make the announcement.
I do not know what will be the reaction of the Johore state government, and the federal government to the statement made by the Sultan of Johore. Will the state government, especially the Menteri Besar dare make a declaration to contradict the Sultan's statement? Or will PM Najib dare to meet the Sultan for an eye-to-eye meeting to explain his thoughts over the proposed third bridge?
The Sultan of Johore has made a stand on the proposal, and let us wait and see what will be the stand of both the state and federal governments. My believe is that this entire episode could have been avoided if there was prior consultation between the Sultan and the government, and my assumption is that there wasn't any such prior consultation.
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