JOHOR BARU: The change of the official form of address for Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar from His Royal Highness to His Majesty is a revival of the honorific for the state Ruler that had already been in use since 1895, says Johor Council of Royal Court president Datuk Abdul Rahim Ramli.
He said Sultan Ibrahim places a lot of emphasis on keeping old Johor traditions alive.
“The British had already acknowledged his great-grandfather Sultan Abu Bakar as His Majesty in 1895 when they recognised Johor as an independent and sovereign state.
“When Malaysia achieved independence in 1957, the honorific for all the Sultans was translated as His Royal Highness.
“However, each of the state titles in Malay was maintained,” he said in an interview yesterday.
Abdul Rahim said the change was Sultan Ibrahim’s desire to maintain royal traditions and state rituals.
He added that other traditions that have been revived in Johor include Sultan Ibrahim’s coronation ceremony three years ago and those during the royal wedding of Tunku Tun Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah.
He explained that the new honorific would also differentiate Sultan Ibrahim and his heir, the Crown Prince of Johor.
“In the United Kingdom, The Queen is known as Her Majesty while her heir is known as His Royal Highness,” said Abdul Rahim.
He said that even now when Sultan Ibrahim receives courtesy calls from foreign high commissioners and ambassadors, they address him as His Majesty.
In a press statement released earlier, Abdul Rahim announced that Sultan Ibrahim has decreed that the change begins from Sept 5.
The change was made under the privileges, power and authority vested in the Ruler under Article 7(2)(d)(f) and (g) of the Second Part of the Johor state constitution of 1895.
Sultan Ibrahim has also consented to Permaisuri Johor Raja Zarith Sofiah binti Almarhum Sultan Idris Shah being addressed as Her Majesty.
The Malay form of address for Sultan Ibrahim and Raja Zarith Sofiah remains unchanged.
In conversations, Sultan Ibrahim shall be addressed as Your Majesty, Tuanku or Sir and Raja Zarith Sofiah as Your Majesty, Tuanku or Madam.