The saga of that Malaysian Federal Territory’s series of car registration plate numbers seems to have expanded. Firstly there were hundreds of people queuing up to bid for their favourite numbers and then there were those with money aplenty to choose, bid and purchase the really eye-popping numbers and the “ong” numbers like 33, 3388, 88,8888 and they can go on in any so-called “lucky” combination for those who believe their luck is tied up by numbers.
I am wondering, who would have bidded for WWW 4444? For the uninitiated, the number 4 sounded like “death” in a Chinese dialect and so is often avoided like the plague by the Chinese and believe you me, even by some Malays. And what about WWW 13? In the English speaking world, that number is also said to be unlucky.
And so we have someone who coveted for a certain number, bidded for it and beat 10,000 others and paid RM520K for it using his “own money” and no, he is not Ananda Krishna, Yeoh Tiong Lai (YTL), Kwok brothers or even Al-Bukhary who are known as Malaysian wealthiest men for many years. Should he be one of these people it was likely that someone, an opposition party member would not be triggered to tweet his opinion causing “anger” in some segment of the population. As a result this person was questioned by the police for, what else but sedition. Gees, guys do be careful what you tweet in this “freedom of expression-loving” country.
Then there is now this Minister who managed to get the plate number WWW 15 in his name and did not even know who paid for it! That number cost some RM24K. Upon questioning, he was evasive and later said he would have to check. If one has gone through the process of biding through the RTD open tender system, one would quickly know how much and what one pays for, surely! Anyway, in this morning papers we are told that the RTD (Road transport Department) has decided to issue that number free for Liow Tiong Lai, the Minister of Health from MCA ( a component party of the ruling BN government) who apparently now says that plate number is for his official car. And what about his doubtful interaction on the issue the day earlier?
And as for the issue being “amicably” solved also breeds another tangle to the whole saga. Who gives the permission to give the number free to Liow now? What about other unsuccessful bidders for the same plate number? As to who has now decided to give that plate number free to Liow is not too difficult a question. One tip for you, no civil servants would dare to join in this “political fracas” and guess who is the Minister in-charge of RTD, no prize for your right answer.
I find the whole thing is rather convoluted. It’s a lot to do with ego, vanity, pride, money,political power, the “BIG C” , belief and perception.
By the way, if nobody wants that plate number WWW 4444, I don’t mind having it …… for free 🙂
**An update on WWW 15 here. Rather too late, we know now the way things are done in this country…. the Great Reveal!