PEKAN: Tengku Puan Pahang Tunku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah Almarhum Sultan Iskandar was proclaimed as the new Tengku Ampuan Pahang, 31 years after the title was last bestowed.

The proclamation was made by Sultan Pahang Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah during a ceremony, steeped in tradition at Balairung Seri, Istana Abu Bakar here.

Tunku Azizah is the fifth Tengku Ampuan Pahang of the modern Pahang sultanate.

The proclamation ceremony began when Tengku Muda Pahang Tengku Abdul Rahman Sultan Ahmad Shah read out the ascension of Tunku Azizah as decreed by Sultan Abdullah.

The instrument of proclamation was then presented to Sultan Abdullah at the Royal Dais before Tunku Azizah rose to accept it.

Tunku Azizah, who was born on Aug 5, 1960, is the fourth child of Almarhum Sultan Iskandar Ibni Almarhum Sultan Ismail and Enche' Besar Hajah Kalsom Abdullah.

She married Sultan Abdullah, who was then the Tengku Mahkota Pahang on March 6, 1986.

The title of Tengku Ampuan Pahang is specially accorded to the consort of the reigning ruler or sultan, who is of royal blood as provided for in the Pahang State Constitution.

Although born with a golden spoon and raised in a royal family laced with protocols, it has never stopped Tunku Azizah from helping the people, regardless of race, religion and social status.

Her willingness to help, especially those affected by disasters, and sincerity have made Tunku Azizah the “People's Pearl”, especially to the people of Pahang.

Pahang State Museum Corpo­ra­tion general manager Datuk Ahmad Farid Abd Jalal said Tunku Azizah never found it awkward ming­ling with the people, including the orang asli.

He said Tunku Azizah addresses the community as “our people” to accord them respect and equal status with that from other races in the state.

“I still remember Tunku Azizah once wanted to produce a book, titled Air Tangan Teng­ku Puan Pahang.

“She instructed me to ensure the orang asli villages were made the main locations and an important agenda in her tour to 11 districts in the state to collect the traditional cooking reci­pes of Pahang.

“She would hug and kiss them, eat the food served by them and was never picky,” he said.

Tunku Azizah's close rapport with the orang asli could also be seen as she mingled with them after the cooking activities.

He said it was customary that Tunku Azizah be feted to a special orang asli dance welcoming visitors, called tarian sewang, apart from being served with various traditional food.

Chairman of Pekan Women's Association Datuk Melati Ali said it had been some time since the people of Pahang had a queen.

“The proclamation of Tunku Azizah brings back the use of the title Tengku Ampuan Pahang, making her the fifth person to be bestowed with the title,” she said.

Melati said it was apt for the title to be bestowed on Tunku Azizah because of her noble personality, who is close and friendly with the people.

“We see her on the ground when the people are struck by disasters. Her concern touches the people's heart.

“She also likes to cook and whenever invited, she will never turn you down and will share her special recipes,” she said. — Bernama.