MUAR: Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar has declared Muar, also known as Bandar Maharani, as the royal town of Johor.
He had first mentioned it during the state's Maulidur Rasul celebration here on Feb 5 and officially conferred the status by signing a declaration plaque and planting a time capsule at Dataran Tanjung Emas here yesterday.
The Ruler was accompanied by his consort Raja Zarith Sofiah Sultan Idris Shah and Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman.
Also present were Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, his wife Puan Sri Norainee Abdul Rahman and state executive council members.
In his address, the Sultan said Bandar Maharani should have its own identity befitting a royal town.
“It should always be clean, peaceful and not contaminated by garbage and waste,” he said, urging his subjects of all races to work together with the state government and the local council to ensure the cleanliness of the town.
Sultan Ibrahim called for old buildings in the town to be gazetted as heritage buildings and all arts and traditions of the people be promoted and exhibited to the public.
In his speech, Abdul Ghani said Bandar Maharani was opened by the late Sultan Abu Bakar Sultan Ibrahim in 1887 and named it to mean “the empress' town” in honour of his consort Maharani Fatimah Abdullah.
“Sultan Abu Bakar liked to visit Muar and that is why many roads and buildings here were named after members of the royal family,” the mentri besar said.
“We all know Muar is older then Malacca and was mentioned in the history of Majapahit before Malacca was founded,” he added.