Legal experts, speaking on condition of anonymity, say Sultan Muhammad V (pic) had his own reasons for stepping down, adding that it had nothing to do with the fact that the Raja Perempuan of Kelantan must be a Malay Muslim. NSTP/MOHAMAD SHAHRIL BADRI SAALI

KOTA BARU: Legal experts have brushed aside viral social media messages which claimed Sultan Muhammad V stepped down as the King because he did not have a queen.

The legal experts, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the Ruler had his own reasons for stepping down, adding that it had nothing to do with the fact that the Raja Perempuan of Kelantan must be a Malay Muslim.

“The ‘news’ that has gone viral doesn’t make sense. There should be no problem for the Agong to hold the position without a queen. There is no law or by-law which requires this,” said one source, adding that it was believed the person who had authored the viral messages had his or her own agenda in doing so.

According to the Kelantan constitution, the Sultan can, upon the advice of the Council of Succession, appoint his consort as the Raja Perempuan, provided she be a Malay Muslim.

Unconfirmed reports purport that Sultan Muhammad recently married a Muscovite, and if this were true, his new wife does not have the right to be appointed Raja Perempuan.

However, there is no law which states that the Agong must have a queen, nor the Sultan of Kelantan have a Raja Perempuan.

The decision by the 15th Yang Di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V to step down from the position not only shocked the people but also the Ruler’s relatives in Kelantan.

Many of them kept mum when asked to comment on the King’s resignation, saying that it was not good to interfere in his decisions.

Though it has been reported that Sultan Muhammad had returned the state on Friday, there seemed to be no indication of this at Istana Negeri, the Ruler’s favourite palace.

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