Yang di-Pertuan Agong

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Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia
يڠ دڤرتوان اݢوڠ
Arms of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.svg
Royal arms of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong
Flag of the Supreme Head of Malaysia.svg
Royal standard of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong
Incumbent
Abdullah of Pahang

since 31 January 2019
Style His Majesty (Malay: Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Seri Paduka Baginda)
Type Constitutional elective federal monarchy
StatusElected by rotation in convention
Residence Istana Negara, Jalan Duta, Kuala Lumpur
Appointer Conference of Rulers (rulers of Malay states)
Term length Five years,
not renewable immediately
Constituting instrument Constitution of Malaysia, Article 32
Inaugural holder Tuanku Abdul Rahman
Formation31 August 1957;61 years ago (1957-08-31)
Unofficial namesKing of Malaysia
Deputy Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah
SalaryRM1,054,560.00 per annum
(Civil List Act 1982) [1]
Website www.istananegara.gov.my
Coat of arms of Malaysia.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Malaysia
Flag of Malaysia.svg Malaysiaportal

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong (literally "He Who is Made Lord", [2] Jawi: يڠ دڤرتوان اݢوڠ), also known as the Supreme Head or the King, is the monarch and head of state of Malaysia. The office was established in 1957, when the Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia) gained independence from the United Kingdom. Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy with an elected monarch as head of state. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong is one of the few elected monarchs in the world.

Jawi alphabet Arabic alphabet for writing the Malay language, Acehnese, Banjarese, Minangkabau, Tausug and several other languages

Jawi is an Arabic alphabet for writing Malay, Acehnese, Banjarese, Minangkabau, Tausūg and several other languages in Southeast Asia.

A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system the head of state is the de jure leader of the nation, and there is a separate de facto leader, often with the title of prime minister. In contrast, a semi-presidential system has both heads of state and government as the leaders de facto of the nation.

Malaysia Federal constitutional monarchy in Southeast Asia

Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia. The federal constitutional monarchy consists of 13 states and three federal territories, separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia. Peninsular Malaysia shares a land and maritime border with Thailand and maritime borders with Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia. East Malaysia shares land and maritime borders with Brunei and Indonesia and a maritime border with the Philippines and Vietnam. Kuala Lumpur is the national capital and largest city while Putrajaya is the seat of federal government. With a population of over 30 million, Malaysia is the world's 44th most populous country. The southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai, is in Malaysia. In the tropics, Malaysia is one of 17 megadiverse countries, with large numbers of endemic species.

Contents

In Malaysia's constitutional monarchy, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has extensive powers within the constitution on paper. The constitution specifies that the executive power of the Federal government is vested in the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. However, he is bound to exercise this power on the advice of the Cabinet or a minister acting under Cabinet authority. The Cabinet is headed by the prime minister, appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong from among the elected members of Parliament. Among them, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong has discretionary powers to choose who he wants as the Prime Minister and is not bound by the decision of the outgoing prime minister if no party has won a majority vote (Article 40). It, however, does not afford him the right and authority to dismiss the prime minister. He also can dismiss or withhold consent to a request for the dissolution of Parliament (Article 40). [3] He may discontinue or dissolve Parliament (Article 55) but he can only dissolve Parliament at the request of the Prime Minister (Article 43). He can reject any new laws or amendments to existing laws but if he still withholds permission, it will automatically become law after 30 days from the initial submission to him (Article 66). [4] The queen consort for the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is known as the Raja Permaisuri Agong and the couple are styled in English as "His Majesty" and "Her Majesty". [5]

Cabinet of Malaysia Executive authority of Malaysia

The Cabinet of Malaysia is the executive branch of Malaysia's government. Led by the Prime Minister, the cabinet is a council of ministers who are accountable collectively to the Parliament. According to the Article 43 of the Constitution, members of the Cabinet can only be selected from members of either houses of Parliament. Formally, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints all Ministers on the advice of the Prime Minister. The constitution is amended by repealing the Clause (8) of Article 43, enabling a person who is a member of State Legislative Assembly.

Prime Minister of Malaysia head of government of Malaysia

The Prime Minister of Malaysia is the head of government and the highest political office in Malaysia. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints Prime Minister as a Member of Parliament (MP) who, in his opinion, is most likely to command the confidence of a majority of MPs. The Prime Minister chairs the Cabinet of Malaysia, the de facto executive branch of government. On 18 October 2018, 7th Prime Minister, Mahathir Mohamad, announced a two-term limit to all Cabinet Profolio.

Parliament of Malaysia bicameral legislature of Malaysia

The Parliament of Malaysia is the national legislature of Malaysia, based on the Westminster system. The bicameral parliament consists of the Dewan Rakyat and the Dewan Negara (Senate). The Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King) as the Head of State is the third component of Parliament.

The 16th and current Yang di-Pertuan Agong is Al-Sultan Abdullah of Pahang, replacing Sultan Muhammad V of Kelantan, who abdicated on 6 January 2019. He was elected on 24 January, at a special meeting of the Conference of Rulers. He took the oath of office and was sworn in at the Istana Negara on 31 January. [6]

Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah ibni Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Al-Musta'in Billah is the 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia and the sixth Sultan of Pahang. He was a member of the FIFA Council from 2015 to 2019. He was proclaimed as Sultan on 15 January 2019, succeeding his father, Sultan Ahmad Shah, whose abdication was decided at a Royal Council meeting on 11 January.

Pahang State of Malaysia

Pahang, officially Pahang Darul Makmur with the Arabic honorific Darul Makmur is a sultanate and a federal state of Malaysia. It is the third largest Malaysian state by area and ninth largest by population. The state occupies the basin of the Pahang River, and a stretch of the east coast as far south as Endau. Geographically located in the East Coast region of the Peninsular Malaysia, the state shares borders with the Malaysian states of Kelantan and Terengganu to the north, Perak, Selangor and Negeri Sembilan to the west, Johor to the south, while South China Sea is to the east. The Titiwangsa mountain range that forms a natural divider between the Peninsula’s east and west coasts is spread along the north and south of the state, peaking at Mount Tahan, which is 2,187m high. Although two thirds of the state is covered by dense rain forest, its central plains are intersected by numerous rivers, and along the coast there is a 32-kilometre wide expanse of alluvial soil that includes the deltas and estuarine plains of the Kuantan, Pahang, Rompin, Endau, and Mersing rivers.

Muhammad V of Kelantan Sultan of Kelantan

Sultan Muhammad V is the current Sultan of Kelantan and served as the 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia from 13 December 2016 to 6 January 2019. He was proclaimed Sultan of Kelantan on 13 September 2010, succeeding his father, Sultan Ismail Petra, who was deemed incapacitated by illness. He was proclaimed Yang di-Pertuan Agong on 13 December 2016. In an unprecedented move, Muhammad V became the first Yang di-Pertuan Agong to step down from the throne, effective 6 January 2019 while his term should have ended on 12 December 2021.

Title

The full style and title in Malay is Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia Seri Paduka Baginda Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia literally means Under the dust of the Almighty referring to how the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's power is dust compared to God's power and the ruler is always subservient to God.

Seri Paduka Baginda refers to Seri as in a person. Paduka means victorious and the term Baginda is in Malay for a royal in the third person.

Yang di-Pertuan Agong in literal English is "He Who is Made Supreme Lord". It is an archaic term for a presiding head which is "Yang di-Pertuan" or literally means "the one-in-charge. "Agong" (or Agung in standard Malay) means "supreme". The term Agong is not translated, as in the Constitution of Malaysia.

Constitution of Malaysia constitution

The Federal Constitution of Malaysia, which came into force in 1957, is the supreme law of Malaysia. The Federation was initially called the Federation of Malaya and it adopted its present name, Malaysia, when the States of Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore became part of the Federation. The Constitution establishes the Federation as a constitutional monarchy having the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as the Head of State whose roles are largely ceremonial. It provides for the establishment and the organisation of three main branches of the government: the bicameral legislative branch called the Parliament, which consists of the House of Representatives and the Senate ; the executive branch led by the Prime Minister and his Cabinet Ministers; and the judicial branch headed by the Federal Court.

Common English terms used in the media and by the general public include "King", "Supreme King", "Paramount Ruler", "Head of State", "Head of the Federation" and "Head of State of the Federation".

In Malaysian passports before 2010, the title "The Supreme Head of Malaysia" was used in the English version of the passport note. Since the issuance of ICAO-compliant e-passports in 2010, the untranslated title "His Majesty the Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia" is used.

Malaysian passport passport

The Malaysian passport is the passport issued to citizens of Malaysia by the Immigration Department of Malaysia.

But in all English correspondence, the King is referred to as "His Majesty The Yang di-Pertuan Agong"

History

Replica of the King's Tengkolok Diraja (Royal Headress), a part of the Regalia of Malaysia. It is a songket made of black fabric embroidered in gold threads, wrapped in the Dendam Tak Sudah style originating from Negeri Sembilan. National Museum KL 2008 (119).JPG
Replica of the King's Tengkolok Diraja (Royal Headress), a part of the Regalia of Malaysia. It is a songket made of black fabric embroidered in gold threads, wrapped in the Dendam Tak Sudah style originating from Negeri Sembilan.

In August 1957, having rejected the suggested title of Yang di-Pertuan Besar in favour of Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the Conference of Rulers elected the first occupant of the throne. By seniority, the 84-year-old major general Ibrahim of Johor, Sultan of Johor since 1895, was first in line, but he declined due to old age. The next in line, Abu Bakar of Pahang, Sultan of Pahang since 1932, was rejected five times by his fellow electors, and did not secure the necessary votes. Abdul Rahman of Negeri Sembilan, having been elected to his state throne (Yamtuan Besar) in 1933, was elected by eight votes to one.

The first Conference of Rulers comprised:

List of Yang di-Pertuan Agong

The following rulers have served as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong:

NumberNameStateReignBirthDeath
1 Tuanku Abdul Rahman Flag of Negeri Sembilan.svg  Negeri Sembilan 31 August 1957 – 1 April 196024 August 18951 April 1960(1960-04-01) (aged 64)
2 Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah Flag of Selangor (pre 1965).svg  Selangor 14 April 1960 – 1 September 196013 May 18981 September 1960(1960-09-01) (aged 62)
3 Tuanku Syed Putra Flag of Perlis.svg  Perlis 21 September 1960 – 20 September 196525 November 192016 April 2000(2000-04-16) (aged 79)
4 Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Flag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 21 September 1965 – 20 September 197024 January 190720 September 1979(1979-09-20) (aged 72)
5 Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah 1st termFlag of Kedah.svg  Kedah 21 September 1970  – 20 September 197528 November 192711 September 2017(2017-09-11) (aged 89)
6 Sultan Yahya Petra Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan 21 September 1975 – 29 March 197910 December 191729 March 1979(1979-03-29) (aged 61)
7 Sultan Ahmad Shah Flag of Pahang.svg  Pahang 26 April 1979 – 25 April 198424 October 1930 (age 88)
8 Sultan Iskandar Flag of Johor.svg  Johor 26 April 1984 – 25 April 19898 April 193222 January 2010(2010-01-22) (aged 77)
9 Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah Flag of Perak.svg  Perak 26 April 1989 – 25 April 199419 April 192828 May 2014(2014-05-28) (aged 86)
10 Tuanku Ja’afar Flag of Negeri Sembilan.svg  Negeri Sembilan 26 April 1994 – 25 April 199919 July 192227 December 2008(2008-12-27) (aged 86)
11 Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah Flag of Selangor.svg  Selangor 26 April 1999 – 21 November 20018 March 192621 November 2001(2001-11-21) (aged 75)
12 Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Flag of Perlis.svg  Perlis 13 December 2001 – 12 December 200617 May 1943 (age 75)
13 Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin Flag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 13 December 2006 – 12 December 201122 January 1962 (age 57)
14 Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah 2nd termFlag of Kedah.svg  Kedah 13 December 2011 – 12 December 201628 November 192711 September 2017(2017-09-11) (aged 89)
15 Sultan Muhammad V Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan 13 December 2016 – 6 January 20196 October 1969 (age 49)
16 Al-Sultan Abdullah Flag of Pahang.svg  Pahang 31 January 2019 – present30 July 1959 (age 59)

Election

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong is formally elected to a five-year term by and from the nine rulers of the Malay states (nine of the thirteen states of Malaysia that have hereditary royal rulers), who form the Conference of Rulers (Majlis Raja-Raja). After a ruler has served as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, he may not stand for election until all rulers of the other states have also stood for election.

In the event of a vacancy of the office (by death, resignation, or deposition by a majority vote of the rulers), the Conference of Rulers elects a new Yang di-Pertuan Agong as if the previous term had expired. The new Yang di-Pertuan Agong is elected for a full five-year term. After his term expires, the Conference holds a new election, in which the incumbent would not be re-elected.

The position de facto rotates among the nine rulers. The selection of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong initially followed an order based on the seniority (calculated by length of reign) of each ruler in 1957, at the Federation of Malaya's independence from the United Kingdom. The Conference of Rulers, which has the power to disqualify a candidate, has sometimes varied the original seniority order, as noted above. Since then, the states have followed a de facto established rotation order. Minors are automatically disqualified from office.

The Conference of Rulers has met regularly since 1985. The four governors ( Yang di-Pertua Negeri ), or heads of states without hereditary rulers, also attend the Conference, but only Rulers are allowed to vote and stand for election as Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Qualifications

The Constitution provides that a Ruler is not eligible for election as Yang di-Pertuan Agong if:

Election proceedings

Letter of Appointment of His Majesty, the XIII Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Courtesy of the office of the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal, Conference of the Rulers of Malaysia. National Museum KL 2008 (124).JPG
Letter of Appointment of His Majesty, the XIII Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Courtesy of the office of the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal, Conference of the Rulers of Malaysia.
Oath of Office of His Majesty, the XIII Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Courtesy of the office of the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal, Conference of the Rulers of Malaysia. National Museum KL 2008 (122).JPG
Oath of Office of His Majesty, the XIII Yang di-Pertuan Agong. Courtesy of the office of the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal, Conference of the Rulers of Malaysia.

The election is carried out by a secret ballot. The ballot papers used are not numbered, but marked with the same pen and ink, and are inserted into a ballot box. Only the Rulers participate in the election.

A ruler may appoint another Ruler as his proxy to vote on his behalf if he is unable to attend the Election Meeting.

During the election process, the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal distributes the ballot with only one candidate. Each ruler is requested to indicate whether the candidate is suitable or not to be elected as Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The most junior ruler, who is not listed as nominee for the office of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, or the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is appointed to count the ballot papers together with the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal.

The nominee must have obtained five votes before the ruler presiding over the Election Meeting offers him the office of Yang di-Pertuan Agong. If the successful nominee declines the offer or the nominated ruler fails to secure the required majority votes, the voting process is repeated with the nomination of the second most senior ruler based on the list of Seniority of States. Rulers are named and stand for election in turn.

The process is completed only after a ruler has accepted the offer of the office of Yang di-Pertuan Agong. The Conference declares the ruler as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to hold office for a term of five years. The ballot papers are destroyed in the presence of the rulers as soon as the result of the election is announced.

On taking office as Yang di-Pertuan Agong, he appoints a regent for the duration of his five-year term for the state which he rules. Usually, but not always, the regent is a close relative. The regent acts as head of state in that state for every purpose except for the role of head of Islam, which is retained by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Order of seniority of states

Since the first cycle of nine Yang di-Pertuan Agong (1957–1994), the order among the eligible state rulers has followed the order established by that cycle, namely:

  1. Flag of Negeri Sembilan.svg the Yang di-Pertuan Besar of Negeri Sembilan
  2. Flag of Selangor.svg the Sultan of Selangor
  3. Flag of Perlis.svg the Raja of Perlis
  4. Flag of Terengganu.svg the Sultan of Terengganu
  5. Flag of Kedah.svg the Sultan of Kedah
  6. Flag of Kelantan.svg the Sultan of Kelantan
  7. Flag of Pahang.svg the Sultan of Pahang
  8. Flag of Johor.svg the Sultan of Johor
  9. Flag of Perak.svg the Sultan of Perak

This cycle was originally established based on seniority. However, the current Rulers are named (and stand as a candidate) according to the cycle, irrespective of whether they are currently the most senior. Since independence from British Colonial Rule, this has been the order of elected Yang di-Pertuan Agong. However, the order is not a precedent and the election to the position of Yang di-Pertuan Agong is at the pleasure of the Conference of Rulers. As an elective monarchy, there is no line of succession to the throne of Malaysia.

Four of the states of Malaysia currently have no hereditary royal rulers. These are Penang and Malacca in Peninsular Malaysia, and Sarawak and Sabah on the island of Borneo in East Malaysia. Sarawak previously had a hereditary ruler until it became a Crown Colony of the British Empire in 1946. These four states, along with Malaysia's three federal territories, do not supply the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong

The Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong (Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong) is elected by the same process immediately after the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. The office is usually (but not always) held by the ruler next in line after the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. The Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong exercises the functions of the head of state during the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's absence, or inability to exercise his functions due to illness or infirmity (similar to a regent in other countries).

The Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong does not automatically succeed as Yang di-Pertuan Agong when a vacancy occurs in that office. The Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong acts as head of state before the election of the new Yang di-Pertuan Agong and Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The current Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong is Sultan Nazrin Shah of Perak since 31 January 2019.

Personal standard of Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong Personal standard of Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong.svg
Personal standard of Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong

List of Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong

The following Rulers have served as Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong as known as the Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong: [7]

NumberNameStateIn officeBirthDeath
1 Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah*Flag of Selangor (pre 1965).svg  Selangor 31 August 1957 – 1 April 196013 May 18981 September 1960(1960-09-01) (aged 62)
2 Tuanku Syed Putra*Flag of Perlis.svg  Perlis 14 April 1960 – 1 September 196025 November 192016 April 2000(2000-04-16) (aged 79)
3 Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah*Flag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 21 September 1960 – 20 September 196524 January 190720 September 1979(1979-09-20) (aged 72)
4 Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah* | 1st termFlag of Kedah.svg  Kedah 21 September 1965  – 20 September 197028 November 192711 September 2017(2017-09-11) (aged 89)
5 Sultan Yahya Petra*Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan 21 September 1970 – 20 September 197510 December 191729 March 1979(1979-03-29) (aged 61)
6 Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Al-Musta’in Billah*Flag of Pahang.svg  Pahang 21 September 1975 – 29 March 197924 October 1930 (age 88)
7 Tuanku Ja’afar 1st termFlag of Negeri Sembilan.svg  Negeri Sembilan 26 April 1979 – 25 April 198419 July 192227 December 2008(2008-12-27) (aged 86)
8 Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah*Flag of Perak.svg  Perak 26 April 1984 – 25 April 198919 April 192828 May 2014(2014-05-28) (aged 86)
9 Tuanku Ja’afar* 2nd termFlag of Negeri Sembilan.svg  Negeri Sembilan 26 April 1989 – 25 April 199419 July 192227 December 2008(2008-12-27) (aged 86)
10 Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah*Flag of Selangor.svg  Selangor 26 April 1994 – 25 April 19998 March 192621 November 2001(2001-11-21) (aged 75)
11 Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin 1st termFlag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 26 April 1999 – 12 December 200122 January 1962 (age 57)
12 Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin* 2nd termFlag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 13 December 2001 – 12 December 200622 January 1962 (age 57)
13 Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah* | 2nd termFlag of Kedah.svg  Kedah 13 December 2006 – 12 December 201128 November 192711 September 2017(2017-09-11) (aged 89)
14 Sultan Muhammad V*Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan 13 December 2011 – 12 December 20166 October 1969 (age 49)
15 Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah 1st termFlag of Perak.svg  Perak 13 December 2016 – 31 January 201927 November 1956 (age 62)
16 Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah 2nd termFlag of Perak.svg  Perak 31 January 2019 – present27 November 1956 (age 62)

* Denotes those who became the new Yang di-Pertuan Agong, immediately following the end of their tenure as Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong

Roles

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong's role is that of a constitutional monarch. The Federal Constitution and Parliamentary Acts made in accordance with it define the extent of his powers as the Federal Head of State.

The monarch's powers are basically divided into two broad categories:

The Constitution vests the executive power of the federal government in the monarch. However, with few exceptions, he is bound to exercise this power on the advice of the Cabinet or a minister acting under the Cabinet's general authority. Thus, in practice, most of the actual day-to-day work of governing is performed by the Cabinet.

The discretionary powers of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong pertain chiefly to appointing the Prime Minister, withholding consent to dissolve Parliament, and calling meetings with the Conference of Rulers "concerned solely with the privileges, position, honours and dignities of Their Royal Highnesses." Under the Westminster System, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is expected to appoint a Prime Minister who will command the confidence of a majority of the elected lower house of Parliament, the Dewan Rakyat . Should the Prime Minister be or become unacceptable, he may be forced out by a vote of no confidence, which would require the Yang di-Pertuan Agong to dissolve Parliament on advice of the Prime Minister, or refuse to dissolve Parliament and appoint someone else as Prime Minister. Conventionally, the Prime Minister is the head of the party with a majority in Parliament. This was the Barisan Nasional (National Front, formerly known as the Alliance) from independence in 1957 until 2018, when Pakatan Harapan took office.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong renews the appointment of a Prime Minister after every general election until the minister decides to step down. Whenever the Prime Minister chooses to dissolve Parliament, he calls for a general election. The Yang di-Pertuan Agong may choose to refuse a Prime Minister's request to dissolve Parliament, as one of his discretionary powers.

Residences

Istana Negara, the official residence of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Kuala Lumpur Malaysia-Istana Negara-Jalan-Duta-01.jpg
Istana Negara, the official residence of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong
The compound of the Istana Negara at Jalan Istana, official residence of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong from 1957 to 2011. Since 2011, the reigning Yang di-Pertuan Agong resides in the larger Istana Negara at Jalan Duta. King House 3.JPG
The compound of the Istana Negara at Jalan Istana, official residence of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong from 1957 to 2011. Since 2011, the reigning Yang di-Pertuan Agong resides in the larger Istana Negara at Jalan Duta.

The official residence of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is Istana Negara (the State Palace) located in Jalan Duta in the federal capital Kuala Lumpur. It was completed in 2011. The old Istana Negara will be turned into a royal museum. Other residences include the royal retreat, Istana Melawati (Melawati Palace) in the federal administrative capital Putrajaya. It is also the venue of meetings of the Conference of Rulers (Malay: Majlis Raja-raja), which elects the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Appointments

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints numerous high-ranking office holders in the Federation under the terms of the Constitution and various Acts passed by Parliament. The constitution established procedures for such appointments.

The Council of Ministers (Cabinet)

Commissions and committees

  • The Election Commission, on the advice of the Conference of Rulers.
  • The Judicial and Legal Service Commission, after consultation with the Chief Justice
  • The Malaysian Public Service Commission at his discretion, after considering the advice of the Prime Minister and after consultation with the Conference of Rulers.

Judges

Senators

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints 44 members of the Dewan Negara, the Malaysian Senate.

State governors

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints the Yang di-Pertua Negeri (Governors), of the states of Penang, Malacca, Sabah and Sarawak, at his discretion, after considering the advice of the state's Chief Minister.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong also appoints the Mayor and City Council of Kuala Lumpur, which is a Federal Territory.

Head of Islam

In addition, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is the Head of Islam in the four states ruled by appointed Governors, in the three Federal Territories, as well as in his own state. In this role, he is advised by the State Islamic Affairs Council in each of the States.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints the chairman and members of each council. He also appoints the State Mufti in each of these states. There is a single Islamic Affairs Council with jurisdiction for the three Federal Territories. This council is also appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Duties as Commander-in-Chief

In accordance with Article 41 of the Federal Constitution, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is Commander-in-Chief of the Federation's Armed Forces. As such, he is the highest-ranking officer in the military chain of command.

As the Supreme Commander of the Malaysian Armed Forces, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong appoints the Chief of Defence Forces, on the advice of the Armed Forces Council. He also appoints the service heads of each of the three branches of the military forces.

King's Birthday

The first Saturday of June yearly is mandated by law[ citation needed ] as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's official birthday. It is marked with various activities all over the nation and the celebrations in Kuala Lumpur are the highlights of the national festivities, with the celebrations of it from 2013 onwards lasting a whole week between two weekends.

After the installation of Sultan Muhammad V as King in 2017, the date for the official birthday was amended twice, first to the last Saturday of July, [8] and then to September 9. [9] This amendment will take effect under the rule of Sultan Muhammad V until 2021.

King's Birthday Honours List Ceremony and Birthday High Tea

The Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur serves as the venue for the annual King's Birthday Honours List and Address to the Nation ceremony attended by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the Raja Permaisuri Agong, members of the Federal Government and Parliament, the state diplomatic corps, honoured guests and the Honours List members for the year, in the order of precedence of state medals. The event honours the year's national achievers and heroes with the awarding of state orders, medals and decorations and their accompanying titles. The King addresses the whole nation via radio and television on this day from the Throne Room of the palace complex. It is followed later by the traditional holiday high tea gathering at the palace grounds in the afternoon.

Trooping the Colour

Trooping the Colour in Malaysia, although inherited from the British, has transformed into a grander and more Malaysian celebration on the first Saturday of June annually live on Kuala Lumpur's Independence Square, which is both open to invited guests and the general public. As the Supreme Commander of the Malaysian Armed Forces, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong takes the salute on this day together with the commanders of the three services of the Malaysian Armed Forces, the Joint Forces Command, Malaysia and the members of the Malaysian Armed Forces Council, of which he is the chairman, plus military personnel and veterans in attendance. He wears the No.1 dress uniform on that day, and as each of the 8 state monarchs are Colonel-in-Chief of selected Malaysian Army regiments as well as of the Royal Malaysian Air Force and the Sultan of Selangor serves as Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Malaysian Navy, he wears that regiment's coloured sash as part of his ceremonial uniform (for the Army), or the RMAF blue or RMN white no.1 dress uniform. The 2013 edition was held on the 2nd Saturday of June for the first time in its history, the 2016 parade was held on the 4th Friday of July (22 July) for the first time in Putrajaya, the national seat of government.

Several features distinguish the Malaysian ceremony from other similar ones:

  • The Malaysian Royal Armoured Corps's Mounted Ceremonial Squadron plus members of the Royal Malaysian Police and selected members of the Royal Military Police Corps of the Malaysian Army provide the Sovereign's Escort for the ceremony. The MCS's fanfare trumpeters sound a fanfare upon the Sovereign's arrival in the Merdeka Square Saluting Base while the MCS itself also has a motorised mounted escort troop and a lancers guard troop ready to accompany them on the way.
  • Instead of being just purely an infantry activity the entire Malaysian Armed Forces go out in full participation in this parade, as seen in the 4 Guard Companies and the National Defence University Band or the Armed Forces Central Band participating in the ceremonial march past.
  • An open top Land Rover is used in the inspection segment of the parade.
  • The Saluting Base in Independence Square was built to be longer in order for more invited guests and the public to attend the ceremony and take the salute.
  • All the commands and salutes are said in Malay, like Hormat DiRaja (Royal Salute), Hormat Perdana (Prime Minister's Salute), Hormat Sedia (General Salute) and Hormat Timbalan (Deputy Prime Minister's Salute).
  • The roles of Field Officer, Brigade Majors (the parade has two instead of 1, which is another unique feature), Adjutant and Ensigns are occupied by select officers of the Armed Forces, either Army, Navy or Air Force officers, with Armed Forces NCOs doing the jobs of Regimental Sergeants Major and Colour Sergeants. However the Deputy Brigade Major (coming from either service) is also the concurrent co-commander of the first parade unit, that of the Joint Escort for/to the Colours, which has 5 Regimental Sergeants Major with the rank of Warrant Officer 2 or Warrant Officer 1 while the three other units have 3 officers and 2 Warrant Officers each
  • All Warrant Officers in this parade, like their British counterparts, carry pace sticks but the WOs of No.1 Guard Company (Composite) throw them to the Orderlies during the Trooping segment, another unique feature
  • State Flypast by 5 military helicopters of the Flag of Malaysia, Flag of the Malaysian Armed Forces, and Flags of the Malaysian Army, Royal Malaysian Navy and Royal Malaysian Air Force during the performances of Negaraku, the National Anthem during the ceremony
  • 21-gun salutes are performed during the National Anthem and during the inspection proper by a select battery from the Royal Artillery Regiment, Malaysian Army
  • Negaraku in its abbreviated form is also performed during the colours obtainment segment by the Joint Escort for the Colors, which becomes the Escort to the Colours after the Colours Party join the Escort
  • In the Islamic traditions of the Armed Forces, prayers are done after the marchpast ends.

All three branches of the Armed Forces – the Malaysian Army (represented by the Royal Malay Regiment, the Royal Armoured Corps and others), the Royal Malaysian Navy, and the Royal Malaysian Air Force – participate in the Trooping, in their No. 1 uniforms. The band in attendance is either the Central Band of the Armed Forces or the Band of the National Defence University.

The Colours Party and the Escort for (to) the Colours also reflect the three participant Armed Forces branches. The Colours Party is composed of Ensigns, Colour Sergeants and assistant soldiers making up three Colours Parties from the Army, and there is also a single Colour Party each from the Navy and the Air Force. The Escort for (to) the Colours is a composite company, comprising an Army platoon and a squad each from the Navy and Air Force ready to receive their respective colours during the ceremony. The Parade Field Officer, Brigade Major and Adjutant are also from all the Armed Forces branches, and so too are the Regimental Sergeants-Major and Colour Sergeants.

RTM broadcasts this unique ceremony live, with the telecast starting at 8:50 in the morning with a nationwide simulcast.

Details of the Trooping

  • Parade forms up near the National Flagpole at Merdeka Square
  • March in of the bands, linemen and Markers
  • March in of the parade, the Brigade Major and Adjutant
  • Arrival of the Field Officer
  • Hand over of command to the FO
  • Uncasing of the Royal Colours
  • Parade stands at ease in preparation
  • Salutes
    • Commander's Salute
    • General Salute
    • Ministerial Salute
    • Deputy Prime Minister's Salute
    • Prime Minister's Salute
  • Arrival of the Sovereigns and first Royal Salute with 21-gun salute by the Royal Artillery Regiment, Malaysian Army and first State Flypast by helicopters of the Royal Malaysian Air Force carrying the Flag of Malaysia, the Armed Forces Flag and the flags of the Army, Navy and Air Force
  • Parade Inspection: Menjunjung Duli is played during the inspection by the military band and the 21 gun salute continues on till the Massed Bands stop playing the slow march as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong inspects the line of troops on the field
  • Trooping and Marchpast of the military band on the parade field, in both slow and quick time, led by the Drum Major and the Directors of Music of the Central Band of the Armed Forces
    • At the advice of the FO, the Drum Major orders the commencement of the trooping of the Massed Bands and the slow march, and as the bands approach the Sovereigns the Drum Major and the Directors of Music salute them, followed by another salute to the Royal Colours before it begins counter-marching and making the transition to quick time
    • During the quick march, a lone drummer from the Massed Bands marches away and goes into the No.1 Guard, and when the music stops he beats the Drummer's Call
  • Trooping Proper
    • Joint Escort for the Colours prepares for the march after the Drummer's Call ends and when the drummer marches back to the military band. All the SMs' pace sticks are removed using a single throw (another unique feature of the ceremony) and are then given to the orderlies so that they can draw and use their swords. The FO then tells the Joint Escort to shoulder arms and the rest to stand at ease.
    • Joint Escort marches in quick time to the Joint Colours Party to receive the Colours, as ordered by its company commander.
    • Handover of the Royal Colours to the RSMs
    • Slow March of the Colours Party and the RSMs happens and then the Ensigns, after saluting and returning their swords, receive their Royal Colours from the RSMs. The FO then orders the parade at attention and shoulder arms.
    • Second performance of the National Anthem (in abbreviated form) and while the anthem is played, the Joint Escort and the Colours Party present arms as ordered and 4 NCO's standing at the corners of the Escort at the same time port their arms turning in a 45° angle as symbolic maximum security for the Colours to be received, and after the music ends they shoulder arms
    • Joint Escort becomes the Joint Escort to the Colours, and the Colours Party join the company, thus merging them with the Joint Escort now that the Colours are in their full possession.
    • The Joint Escort begins its slow march for the Trooping, marching towards No.4 Guard, with the band joining them
    • The FO commands the parade to present arms when the Joint Escort begins its trooping
    • Trooping of the Joint Escort in slow time, accompanied by the Central Band of the Armed Forces
    • After the Colours have been trooped in slow time, the Joint Escort halts in place, turns about, and then presents arms as ordered. After this, the parade is told to shoulder arms by the FO, signalling the end of the Trooping proper itself.
  • Marchpast
    • The FO tells the parade officers, the Colours and WOs to take post
    • The parade executes a right form after which, to the tune of the military bands, it does an about turn to the right while forming divisions
    • The FO, with the parade now in position, commands the slow march.
    • Slow March Past: The FO leads the units in the slow time march. By now, all units do the complex Left Form manoeuvre upon reaching the corners of the parade field. The parade salutes with swords and eyes right, and for No.1 Guard the Ensigns, by then at the front, do the "flourish" (on the eyes right) and "recover" (on the eyes front) for the Royal Colours in the presence of Their Majesties and the high command, which salute them and the entire parade. Neutral marches start and end the segment.
    • Quick March Past: This time, the parade salutes on the eyes right only, no colours are lowered since there are now at the rear and Malaysian patriotic marches and other neutral marches commence and end the segment. When the 3 services and all four companies are recognised and do eyes in front of the Sovereigns and the officers present their eyes right salutes their respective service march (Malaysian Army: Gagah Setia, Royal Malaysian Navy: Samudera Raya, Royal Malaysian Air Force: Perwira di Angkasa) or the Malaysian Armed Forces March is played by the Central Band
    • After the marchpast and the companies have halted, the FO orders yet another march to divisions at the front with the tune from the bands (the halts are followed by applauses by the audience), and the officers and Colours are told to take posts again afterwards followed by another dressing
  • Parade Finale
    • The FO orders the parade to advance in review order and as it halts he orders the parade to order and change arms
    • The FO orders the parade to render three cheers of Daulat Tuanku (Long Live The King) to His Majesty the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, who acknowledges their shouts
    • As the Master of Ceremonies announces the prayer, drum rolls signal the parade to stand in prayer as a representative of the Armed Forces Religious Corps leads the parade and the audience in prayer, with drum rolls ending the segment and the parade told to change arms again
    • Final Royal Salute, Flypast and departure of the Sovereigns
    • Casing of the Royal Colours
    • March off of the formation, band and line men

Yang di-Pertuan Agong Scholarship

In November 2006, the 10th Yang di-Pertuan Agong awarded, for the first time, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Scholarship to ten outstanding students to pursue postgraduate studies at high-ranking world universities. The award of scholarships was held at the Istana Negara in conjunction with the Independence Day celebrations and the Conference of Rulers. [10]

Immunity

In 1993, amendments to the Malaysian constitution removed the legal immunity of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the rulers in their personal capacity, due to public outrage over their behaviour. [11] A Special Court (Makhamah Khas Raja-raja) is established where civil and criminal proceedings can be made against a ruler with the approval of the Attorney General. The right to sue a ruler is limited to Malaysian citizens following a precedent. The Special Court also have jurisdiction where a ruler initiates legal actions against any party.

When a ruler is charged with an offence in the Special Court, he is required to stop exercising the functions of a ruler. In the event of a ruler being sentenced to imprisonment for more than one day, he will cease to be a ruler unless a free pardon is granted. [12]

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong or any ruler cannot pardon himself or his immediate family. In such case, they may request clemency from the Conference of Rulers.

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong cannot be sued in court for his actions while carrying out his official duties. Any claims can be made against the federal government.

Royal Standards

The Royal Standard of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is royal yellow with the Coat of arms of Malaysia in the centre, surrounded by a rice paddy wreath. The same goes for the Royal Standards of the Raja Permaisuri Agong and the Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong, but the designs are different. The Raja Permaisuri Agong's standard is green in colour, with the coat of arms at the centre surrounded by the paddy wreath. The Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong's standard is bicolored, yellow at the top and light blue at the bottom, with the coat of arms at the centre (without the paddy) and below that is the office bearer's title.

Royal style

Styles of
The Yang di-Pertuan Agong
Reference style His Majesty
Spoken styleYour Majesty
Alternative styleTuanku

Formal address to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong is taken seriously in Malaysia. There are two ways of addressing the Yang di-Pertuan Agong:

List of living former Yang di-Pertuan Agong

NameStateIn officeDate of birthRemarks
Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah Flag of Pahang.svg  Pahang 1979–198424 October 1930 (age 88)The 7th Yang-di Pertuan Agong
Sultan of Flag of Pahang.svg  Pahang
Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Flag of Perlis.svg  Perlis 2001–200617 May 1943 (age 75)The 12th Yang-di Pertuan Agong
Raja of Flag of Perlis.svg  Perlis
Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin Flag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu 2006–201122 January 1962 (age 57)The 13th Yang di-Pertuan Agong
Sultan of Flag of Terengganu.svg  Terengganu
Sultan Muhammad V Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan 2016–20196 October 1969 (age 49)The 15th Yang Di-Pertuan Agong
Sultan of Flag of Kelantan.svg  Kelantan

The most recently deceased former Yang di-Pertuan Agong was Sultan Abdul Halim Muadzam Shah of Kedah, 11 September 2017(2017-09-11) (aged 89), the 5th (1970–1975) and 14th (2011–2016) Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

See also

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References

  1. "Act 269 - Civil List Act 1982" (PDF). Attoney-General Chamber. AGC Malaysia. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  2. "Malaysia king: Sultan Muhammad V sworn in". BBC . 13 December 2016.
  3. Powers of the king.
  4. Constitutional Crisis, Crisis of 1983
  5. Royal Ark
  6. Azil, Firdaus; Januari 24, Astro Awani |; Myt, 2019 15:21. "Sultan Pahang sah YDP Agong baharu | Astro Awani". www.astroawani.com (in Malay). Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  7. Senarai Timbalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong
  8. "King's official birthday moved to last Saturday of July". The Star (Malaysia) . 26 April 2017. Retrieved 9 June 2018.
  9. "PMO: Agong's official birthday moved from July 29 to Sept 9". The Star (Malaysia) . 13 July 2017. Retrieved 9 June 2018.
  10. "10 Students Awarded The Yang Di-Pertuan Agong Scholarship 2006", Bernama, accessed 11 August 2009
  11. "Malaysian democrats pin their hopes on the country's royals". The Economist. 26 January 2017. Retrieved 4 February 2017.
  12. "Test case on right to sue Sultans" [ permanent dead link ] (20 August 2008), The Star, accessed 29 November 2011

Further reading