JOHOR ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar was installed on Wednesday (Jan 31) as Malaysia’s 17th king, the first time he is holding the post and more than 34 years after his father’s reign.
Thousands of people thronged the streets in Johor Bahru and Kuala Lumpur to bid farewell and welcome him respectively, as the 65-year-old’s appointment raised hopes that he would bring about positive change in the economy, diplomacy and national unity.
The monarch took the oath of office at the national palace in Kuala Lumpur slightly before noon, in an opulent ceremony steeped in centuries of tradition.
Sultan Ibrahim was decked in the black uniform of the Johor Military Force.
In front of a congregation of hundreds of guests, including Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, Sultan Ibrahim signed the letter of appointment before he was officially proclaimed Yang di-Pertuan Agong, or Supreme Ruler, for the next five years.
Sultan Ibrahim was elected king in October 2023, after the country’s nine sultans met at the Conference of Rulers.
The decision follows the established order of Malaysia’s unique rotational monarch system in which the country’s nine rulers take turns to be the king for five-year cycles.
The term for his predecessor, Pahang ruler Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah, ended on Jan 30.
The Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Shah, who was elected deputy king at October’s meeting, also took the oath of office on Wednesday.