Sultan Ibrahim ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar of Johor has been chosen as the 17th Yang di-Pertuan Agong, serving a five-year term starting from January 31, 2024.
Malaysia practices an elective monarchy system, where the next ruling monarch and Deputy King are chosen through a ballot system. This method involves the nine Malay Rulers, representing the historical Malay kingdoms of Negri Sembilan, Selangor, Perlis, Terengganu, Kedah, Kelantan, Pahang, Johor, and Perak, casting their votes. This rotational voting process was established after gaining independence from British rule in 1957.
During the 263rd Meeting of the Conference of Rulers, presided over by Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin of Terengganu, the decision was made to elect the 17th Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA) and Deputy YDPA. Notably, Kelantan and Perlis were absent from this special meeting. It was declared that Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah of Perak would serve as the Deputy King for a five-year term starting from January 31, 2024. The official announcement of the result was made by Royal Seal Syed Danial Syed Ahmad on Friday and was duly communicated to the Parliament and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Duties of the King:
In Malaysia’s constitutional monarchy, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (YDPA) holds significant responsibilities, overseeing political and judicial matters while serving as the Commander-in-chief of the Malaysian armed forces. During political standoffs, the constitution empowers the king to appoint a suitable Prime Minister.
Additionally, the YDPA possesses discretionary authority to grant royal pardons and early releases to imprisoned individuals. The official residence of the YDPA is the Istana Negara, located in Kuala Lumpur.
Sultan Ibrahim, the current ruler of Johor, is the son of the late Sultan Iskandar Sultan Ismail, who previously served as the YDPA from 1984 to 1989. Sultan Ibrahim is renowned for his outspoken nature and is widely regarded as an ideal choice for the role.
Sultan Abdullah, the predecessor of Sultan Ibrahim, played a pivotal role during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite his term being marked by political instability, he collaborated diligently with multiple Prime Ministers to resolve political issues. Sultan Abdullah’s responsible and adept handling of challenges earned him praise. Under his rule, he appointed three Prime Ministers, demonstrating his commitment to resolving political stalemates. Malaysia, like 42 other countries, practices a constitutional monarchy system, wherein the monarch’s powers are defined and limited by a constitution.