The History of Malaysia Presidency
Malaysia is a Southeast Asian nation with a rich history that dates back thousands of years. It has a unique political system known as a constitutional monarchy, where the country is ruled by a king (known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong) and a system of elected representatives. Below, I’ll provide an overview of the history of Malaysia with a focus on its presidency.
Malaysia’s history can be traced back to ancient civilizations, including the Malay Kingdoms of Langkasuka and Srivijaya. These kingdoms were active in trade and culture and played a significant role in the region.
Malacca Sultanate (15th century)
In the 15th century, the Malacca Sultanate, under Sultan Parameswara, became a powerful trading empire, attracting traders from China, India, and the Middle East. This period marked the beginning of Islam’s influence in the region.
Colonial Era (16th until 20th century)
Portuguese, Dutch, and British colonial powers all established control over different parts of what is now Malaysia. The British played a dominant role, with territories such as Penang, Malacca, and Singapore forming the Straits Settlements. Meanwhile, the Malay states in the peninsula maintained varying degrees of autonomy under British protection.
Japanese Occupation (1941 until 1945)
During World War II, Malaysia (then known as Malaya) was occupied by Japanese forces. This occupation ended with Japan’s surrender in 1945.
Post-War Era and Independence
After World War II, the demand for self-governance in Malaya grew, leading to the establishment of the Malayan Union in 1946 and, later, the Federation of Malaya in 1948. Tunku Abdul Rahman, a prominent leader, played a crucial role in achieving independence from British colonial rule.
Formation of Malaysia (1963)
On September 16, 1963, Malaysia was officially formed through the merger of the Federation of Malaya with Singapore, North Borneo (now Sabah), and Sarawak. This union was short-lived, as Singapore separated from Malaysia in 1965 to become an independent city-state.
Presidency in Malaysia
Malaysia’s political system is unique and different from countries with a presidential system. Malaysia is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary democracy. It does not have a president. Instead, the head of state is the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (King), who is a constitutional monarch chosen by a rotating council of Malay rulers.
Malaysia has seen significant economic development since gaining independence. The country is known for its diverse culture, vibrant economy, and lush natural landscapes. It has also faced challenges related to ethnic and religious diversity and has worked to maintain harmony among its various communities.
Malaysia has had a series of prime ministers, not presidents, who are the head of government and are chosen from the majority party in the parliamentary system. Notable prime ministers include Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Abdul Razak, Tun Hussein Onn, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, and others.
Malaysia does not have a President as its head of state; instead, it has a unique constitutional monarchy system with a rotating monarchy known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. However, it does have a Prime Minister who is the head of government. Below is a list of the Prime Ministers of Malaysia with detailed information:
Tunku Abdul Rahman (1957 until 1970)
Tunku Abdul Rahman was Malaysia’s first Prime Minister. He played a pivotal role in negotiating independence from British colonial rule and led the country through its formative years.
Tun Abdul Razak Hussein (1970 until 1976)
Tun Abdul Razak succeeded Tunku Abdul Rahman as Malaysia’s second Prime Minister. He implemented the New Economic Policy (NEP) to address economic disparities among different ethnic groups in Malaysia.
Tun Hussein Onn (1976 until 1981):
Tun Hussein Onn served as the third Prime Minister of Malaysia. His tenure saw continued efforts to promote national unity and economic development.
Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad (1981 until 2003)
Dr. Mahathir Mohamad was Malaysia’s longest-serving Prime Minister, serving two non-consecutive terms. He was known for his “Look East Policy,” which emphasized economic growth and modernization.
Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi (2003 until 2009)
Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi succeeded Dr. Mahathir Mohamad. His administration promoted a moderate and inclusive form of Islam and focused on economic development.
Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak (2009 until 2018)
– Najib Razak, the son of Tun Abdul Razak, served as the sixth Prime Minister. His tenure was marked by controversies, including the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) scandal.
Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad (2018 until 2020)
Dr. Mahathir Mohamad returned for a second term as Malaysia’s Prime Minister in 2018 after a stunning electoral victory. His second term aimed at addressing corruption and promoting good governance.
Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin (2020 until 2021)
Muhyiddin Yassin became the eighth Prime Minister of Malaysia in March 2020. His tenure was marked by political instability, partly due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ismail Sabri Yaakob (2021 until Present)
Ismail Sabri Yaakob succeeded Muhyiddin Yassin as the ninth Prime Minister of Malaysia in August 2021. His administration continued to grapple with the pandemic and its economic repercussions.