Abdication complicates the making of a king

A Conference of Rulers meeting in May 2017 attended by (from left) Negeri Sembilan ruler Tuanku Muhriz Almarhum Tuanku Munawir; then Terengganu Menteri Besar Ahmad Razif Abdul Rahman; Terengganu Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin; Raja of Perlis Tuanku Syed
A Conference of Rulers meeting in May 2017 attended by (from left) Negeri Sembilan ruler Tuanku Muhriz Almarhum Tuanku Munawir; then Terengganu Menteri Besar Ahmad Razif Abdul Rahman; Terengganu Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin; Raja of Perlis Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Putra Jamalullail; Perlis Menteri Besar Azlan Man; Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah; then Selangor Menteri Besar and current Economic Affairs Minister Mohamed Azmin Ali; Perak Sultan Nazrin Shah.

For first time since independence in 1957, next in line may not get the minimum five votes needed to be king

KUALA LUMPUR - Any hope of a swift resolution to the vacant seat of Malaysia's king was dashed when the country's state monarchs decided they will elect a new king only on Jan 24, despite having met on Monday following the sudden resignation of Kelantan's Sultan Muhammad V as the head of state.

In the past, the process had been relatively straightforward, given that a rotational order among the nine Malay royal houses set out in the Federal Constitution and the regulations of the Conference of Rulers has not been disturbed.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2019, with the headline 'Abdication complicates the making of a king'. Print Edition | Subscribe