King's installation: Brunei Sultan's consent to grace ceremony underscores close ties

KUALA LUMPUR: His Majesty Sultan Ibrahim, King of Malaysia's visit to Brunei on July 20 to personally present the Instrument of Royal Invitation for the Installation of His Majesty as the 17th King of Malaysia to Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah underscores the close relationship between the neighbouring countries.

Istana Negara Grand Chamberlain Datuk Azuan Effendy Zairakithnaini said Sultan Ibrahim’s visit to Istana Nurul Iman in Bandar Seri Begawan on June 25 portrayed the unique and strong bond forged between the heads of state.

Azuan Effendy, who accompanied His Majesty on the visit, described the meeting as beautiful and special and said it was conducted in a cosy atmosphere.

"...even though Brunei is not part of Malaysia, the fraternity among the Malay Rulers led Sultan Ibrahim to consent to a visit to Brunei and personally present the invitation letter to Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah.

"The audience and the presentation of the Instrument of Invitation use specific honorifics in the palace language, but (during the meeting) His Majesty referred to Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah as ‘abang’ (elder brother), while the Brunei Sultan addressed Sultan Ibrahim as ‘adik’ (younger brother). It is truly extraordinary,” he told Bernama recently.

Azuan Effendy said that during the meeting, the Sultan of Brunei expressed gratitude and delight over Sultan Ibrahim’s visit. He added that the Brunei Ruler stated the intention to attend the ceremony even though he would be occupied with various programmes as Brunei celebrates His Majesty’s 78th birthday on July 15.

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"His Majesty (Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah) said he would rearrange official events planned to attend and show support for Sultan Ibrahim’s Installation Ceremony,” he said.

On the Instrument of Royal Invitation, Azuan Effendy said it was specially made from goatskin and presented to Malay rulers and Yang di-Pertua Negeri, as well as foreign royalties requesting them to grace the installation ceremony, which is the traditional practice.

"The words remain unchanged, handwritten in Jawi script using the Malay language and placed in a special capsule before being presented by the delegation to the respective invitees,” he added.

Sultan Ibrahim took the oath and signed the instrument of office as the 17th King on Jan 31. – Bernama

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