Tengku Abdullah next Agong?

Tengku Abdullah Shah

Tengku Abdullah Shah is tipped to take over the Pahang throne in a matter of days to pave the way for him to be named Malaysia’s 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Sources close to the Pahang palace confirmed talks were being held behind closed doors and that if all goes well, the proclamation of the new Sultan of Pahang will be carried out “soon”.

“It’s due to health reasons … to make it happen, he (Tengku Abdullah) needs to be appointed (as) Sultan (of Pahang) by his father (Sultan Ahmad Shah) to take over and the proclamation must take place as soon as possible,” said a source.

Earlier today, the Keeper of the Rulers’ Seal Tan Sri Syed Danial Syed Ahmad said the Malay rulers will hold a special meeting on Jan 24 to choose the new Yang di-Pertuan Agong and that the new King will take his oath on Jan 31.

Till then, Sultan of Perak Sultan Nazrin Shah will be the acting Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

Sultan Muhammad V, in an unprecedented move on Sunday, stepped down as the 15th Yang di-Pertuan Agong. It remains unclear why the Kelantan ruler abdicated.

Last week, the Malay rulers met in an “unscheduled meeting”. There has not been any official statement regarding the meeting as well.

When the Jan 24 deadline was pointed out, the source said: “Can, we have 16 days. Coronation can take place within a week once everything is confirmed.”

Tengku Abdullah is currently in London and is expected to return “within the next few days”.

He was appointed Crown Prince of Pahang on July 1, 1975 and formally installed on Oct 23, 1977 at Istana Abu Bakar in Pekan. An official government notification dated Dec 28, 2016 announced Tengku Abdullah was appointed as the Regent of Pahang.

Tengku Abdullah, who turns 60 on July 30, is a familiar face in the domestic and international sports scene, having served as president of the FA of Malaysia and Malaysian Hockey Confederation in the past and was the former Asian Football Confederation vice-president.

He is currently president of the Asian Hockey Federation and a FIFA Council member.

Following the rotation system, the next in line for the throne is Sultan Ahmad Shah, followed by Sultan of Johor Sultan Ibrahim Iskandar and Sultan Nazrin.

In respecting the unique rotation tradition, Sultan Ibrahim rejected the offer to become the Yang di-Pertuan Agong in 2016. The move was clarified on his official Facebook page on Oct 14, 2016.