Sultan Abdullah eligible to be elected as next King

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PEKAN (Jan 15): Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah Ibni Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Al-Musta’in Billah ascended the Pahang throne today, making His Royal Highness eligible to be elected as the next Yang di-Pertuan Agong going by the rotational system of election practised by the nine Malay Rulers.

The sixth Sultan of Pahang is the next in line to be the 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong in accordance with the rotational list employed since independence in 1957, the order of which is as follows: Negeri Sembilan, Selangor, Perlis, Terengganu, Kedah, Kelantan, Pahang, Johor and Perak.

The Conference of Rulers will meet on Jan 24 at Istana Negara to elect the next and 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong. The Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V, stepped down on Jan 6 as the 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The Pahang Royal Council met last Friday and unanimously decided to appoint Sultan Abdullah to succeed his father, Paduka Ayahanda Sultan Ahmad Shah Sultan Abu Bakar, who would have had to skip being elected as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong due to his poor health.

Sultan Abdullah was proclaimed as the sixth Sultan of Pahang in a ceremony steeped in tradition at the Balairung Seri (Throne Room) of Istana Abu Bakar in this royal town. He pledged to reign with fairness and trust and in accordance with the Pahang State Constitution.

His Royal Highness also pledged to preserve and defend at all times the sanctity of Islam and the peace and prosperity of the people.

He also said he would continue to prioritise the people’s needs during his reign by strongly holding to the principle of “Raja dan Rakyat Berpisah Tiada” (the Ruler and the People are Inseparable).

While expressing his appreciation for the contribution and sacrifices of his father and mother, Almarhum Bonda Tengku Ampuan Afzan Tengku Muhammad, Sultan Abdullah fought back tears as he called on the people to pray for them both.

Speaking to the media after the proclamation, Sultan Abdullah said the next Tengku Mahkota Pahang (Pahang Crown Prince) would be decided after a family meeting and the announcement would be made soon.

Traditionally, the Tengku Mahkota Pahang is the eldest son of the current Ruler, and that would be Sultan Abdullah’s third child, Tengku Panglima Besar Pahang Tengku Hassanal Ibrahim Alam Shah.

Tengku Hassanal Ibrahim Alam Shah, 23, is studying at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst in the United Kingdom, having enrolled at the institution in early January.

Tengku Muda Pahang Tengku Abdul Rahman Sultan Ahmad Shah, in his loyalty pledge to Sultan Abdullah, said he was confident that his brother would reign Pahang with wisdom and excellence.

Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail said in his loyalty pledge, on behalf of the people of Pahang, that he would galvanise efforts to protect the sovereignty of the state.

Describing Sultan Abdullah as a Ruler of the people, he said the people would be protected by Sultan Abdullah who understood their hardship and difficulties.