Following the resignation of Sultan Muhammad V of Kelantan as the 15th Yang Di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia, there has been speculation as to whom the next Agong might be. One possible candidate includes Deputy Yang Di-Pertuan Agong, Sultan Nazrin Shah of Perak, as he has been visibly carrying out duties as the Acting Yang Di-Pertuan Agong during Sultan Muhammad V’s leave of absence due to medical reasons. The Sultan of Johor, Sultan Ibrahim Ismail, is also in line to be Agong if the Council of Rulers, also known as Durbar, decide to follow the original line up of succession from the first Agong, Tuanku Abdul Rahman of Negeri Sembilan, back in 1957.
Related article: WHY SULTAN NAZRIN SHAH COULD BE NEXT IN LINE AFTER AGONG RESIGNED
However, there is now a new contender for the throne – the newly-crowned Sultan Abdullah of Pahang. Previously the Crown Prince, His Majesty was proclaimed the sixth Sultan of Pahang since the previous ruler, Sultan Ahmad Shah is currently too ill to perform duties.
The original line of succession for Agong lists down the Sultan of Pahang as successor after the Sultan of Kelantan, and only after that to be followed by Johor. Pahang was assumed to be bypassed previously due to the former Sultan’s illness. However, now that there is a new Sultan, Pahang is now back to being up for consideration.
This is not to say that the Sultans of Johor and Perak are out of the picture. The Council of Rulers, made up of the nine Rulers of the Malay states, and the governors or Yang di-Pertua Negeri of Penang, Malacca, Sabah and Sarawak, ultimately have the power to decide who should be the next Agong at their discretion as well as through voting.
Is Sultan Abdullah Too Junior To Be Agong?
According to political and law analyser, Professor Datuk Dr Abdul Halim Sidek, there is no provision that says that a Sultan has to go through a “waiting” or “probationary” period before he is eligible to be appointed as Agong. As reported by Berita Harian, any Sultan currently presiding on his throne over his state is eligible to be a candidate for the next Agong, in line with Article 32 of the Malaysian Constitution.
Tengku Abdullah’s coronation as the Sultan of Pahang will take place this 15 January at Istana Bakar, Pekan.
The Council of Rulers will be in a special meeting at the Istana Negara this 24 January to decide on the next Yang Di-Pertuan Agong XVI, as well as the Deputy.
The Council of Rulers will also hold a special meeting on 31 January to discuss the swearing-in ceremonies, said the Keeper of the Royal Seal Tan Sri Syed Danial Syed Ahmad.