He replaces Muhammad V, the sultan of Kelantan who abdicated on 6 January. Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign plays a largely ceremonial function. The throne passes on a five-year rotational basis between the rulers of the country's nine states headed by Islamic royalty.
Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin al-Mustafa Billah Shah (pictured), the 59-year-old Sultan of Pahang, was elected this morning as the new king of Malaysia, at the end of a special meeting of Malay rulers. He succeeds Muhammad V, the sultan of Kelantan, who resigned on 6 January after only two years on the throne.
A statement by the Keeper of the Rulers' Seal Syed Danial Syed Ahmad also announced that Perak’s Sultan Nazrin Shah was elected deputy king.
The special meeting, which began at 11.15 am at the Istana Negara (National Palace), was chaired by Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin of Terengganu. Eight of the nine Malay rulers cast their ballot papers during the election process.
Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy, in which the sovereign plays a largely ceremonial role. The king is elected on a rotational basis every five years by rulers of the country's nine states headed by Islamic royalty.
Abdullah became the new ruler of Pahang – in place of his elderly and sick father – on 15 January, following Muhammad V’s historic abdication.
The abdication, a first for Malaysia in modern times, followed reports that he married an ex-beauty queen in Russia in November during a purported two-month medical leave.