ALOR SETAR • Tan Sri Tunku Sallehuddin ibni Almarhum Sultan Badlishah has been announced as the 29th Sultan of Kedah, succeeding his brother, the late Sultan Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah, who died on Monday.
The announcement was made yesterday by Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah, Menteri Besar of the northern state in Malaysia, The Star reported.
Born on April 30, 1942, in Alor Setar, state capital of Kedah, Tunku Sallehuddin is married to Puan Sri Tengku Maliha Tengku Ariff and has two sons - Tunku Sarafuddin Badlishah and Tunku Sahzuddin Badlishah.
Thousands gathered yesterday at the palace, Istana Anak Bukit, to pay their last respects to the late Sultan.
Singapore's Acting President J. Y. Pillay and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong have written to the late Sultan's wife, Tuanku Sultanah Hajah Haminah Binti Haji Hamidun, to convey their condolences .
The Singaporean leaders' letters came as Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan attended the Sultan's funeral in Alor Setar yesterday morning, where he conveyed the condolences of the Government and the people of Singapore.
In his letter, Mr Pillay noted that Sultan Abdul Halim made history as the first ruler to have held the post of Yang di-Pertuan Agong, or head of state of Malaysia, twice.
"As Agong, he was a benevolent and wise ruler who held the welfare of the people of Malaysia above all else," he wrote, adding that initiatives taken by the Sultan had helped improve the lives of all Malaysians.
Prime Minister Lee, in his letter, said that both he and his wife Ho Ching were deeply saddened by the Sultan's passing.
"Please accept our deepest condolences on your loss," he wrote.
Mr Lee recalled: "We had the privilege of calling on His Royal Highness when he made his State Visit to Singapore in May 2014. He was warm and engaging, and I enjoyed my conversation with him very much."
"His Royal Highness' passing is a great loss to the people of Malaysia, and he will be dearly missed by everyone," Mr Lee wrote to the Sultanah.