Shoppers at an Aeon Mall supermarket in Johor, Malaysia, had a field day on Wednesday (Apr 10) when royalty showed up and offered to pay for their grocery bills, even though it was a short-lived affair.
On Wednesday evening, Tunku Mahkota Johor Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim made a surprise appearance at the supermarket in Tebrau City, announcing via loudhailer that he would be paying for shoppers’ groceries.
His offer: RM3,000 ($773.98) per trolley.
The announcement sparked an hour-long frenzy – although Tunku Ismail was present in the mall for less than five minutes – with hundreds of people quickly filling their trolleys with household items.
In fact, the mania grew so huge that mall security had to be increased to manage the crowd. Shutters were also brought down to hold back the influx of shoppers.
Tunku Ismail’s bill eventually amounted to a whopping RM1 million.
Shoppers were grateful for the unexpected generosity displayed by the Johor royal family, with some able to purchase months’ worth of groceries.
Shortly after, Tunku Ismail made a post on the Johor Southern Tigers Facebook page, saying there was no political motivation behind the episode.
He wrote: “I’m no politician, I do not need votes. But I genuinely love my people. Always with you Bangsa Johor.”
The post has since garnered over 64,000 reactions, 27,000 shares and 11,000 comments, with the majority of reactions and comments being positive.
Tunku Ismail’s unforeseen deed came in the wake of a controversy incited by a Facebook post he made on Saturday (Apr 7) which supposedly implied he was in support of the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition party.
The post was also seen as a subtle attack on Pakatan Harapan (PH) leader Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, branding him a “forked tongue” individual without explicitly naming him.
In a subsequent post on Monday (Apr 9), he wrote about his politically neutral position and called for respect among members the community.