Malaysia’s royal official confirmed that the king Sultan Muhammad V has abdicated, BBC reported. After weeks of rumours, the announcement was made, ending weeks of speculation about the future of the monarchy and his own.
In Malaysian monarchy’s history, there were n precedents when the king preferred a life of the common to the throne. The 49-year-old Sultan Muhammad V became the first ever royal who realized the right to abdicate. His Sunday’s decision marks the historical moment when a monarch has abdicated in the Muslim-majority country.
Malaysia, the Asian country with a rich history and culture, gained independence from Britain in 1957. Since then, one king changed another but none of them thought on abdication. The announcement on Sunday follows the speculation and rumours Sultan Muhammad V had married a much younger Russian beauty.
“The National Palace informs that his majesty has resigned as the 15th king effective January 6,” a statement from the palace said on Sunday.
In such a laconic statement, the palace did not give any reason for the royal’s move. His the most discussable recent move was a marriage with a former Miss Moscow who converted to Muslim to became the wife of Sultan Muhammed V. Despite the rumours and a stir caused by such a marriage on social media, the royal officials in Malaysia have so far not commented on the speculations.
There had been a question mark over the reign of the king, who ascended to the throne in December 2016, since he took a leave of absence for medical treatment in November.
Malaysia is a monarchy, what happens next?
Under current law, Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy, with a unique arrangement where the throne changes hands every five years between the rulers of the nine Malaysian states headed by centuries-old Islamic royalty.
Speculation had intensified about Sultan Muhammad V’s future this week when the country’s other royals reportedly held a special meeting.