Yang di-Pertuan Negara

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Yang di-Pertuan Negara, translated from Malay as "(he) who is Lord", is a title for the head of state, and has been used as an official title at various times in Sabah, Singapore and Brunei, not to be confused with the four non-monarchical heads of Malaysian states known as Yang di-Pertua Negeri, nor the head monarch of Malaysia who is known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.


Head of State of Sabah was once known as Yang Di-Pertuan Negara and later known as Yang Di-Pertua Negeri.[1]


In 1959, following revisions to the Constitution which granted Singapore internal self-government, the ceremonial post of Yang di-Pertuan Negara replaced the British colonial Governor of Singapore as the representative of the British monarch in Singapore. Although the title had the literal meaning of head of state, the Yang di-Pertuan Negara was constitutionally only a de jure chief executive, acting as a vice-regal representative in lieu of the typical Governor-General.[2]

Under a transitional arrangement, the last Governor of Singapore, Sir William Goode, served as the first Yang di-Pertuan Negara from June 3, 1959, to December 3, 1959.[3] He was succeeded by Yusof bin Ishak, who was sworn into office on the same day as the country's national flag, coat of arms, and national anthem were adopted.

The title was retained when Singapore became the fourteenth state of Malaysia in 1963. The office holder then acted as the vice-regal representative of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.[2]

On August 9, 1965, Singapore was separated from the federation to become an independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations. On December 22 of that year, the Constitution was amended to make the country a republic, and change the title to President with retroactive effect from the date of independence.[4]


In Brunei, the Sultan of Brunei is also known as the Yang Di-Pertuan Negara Brunei Darussalam.

The full title for the head of state and head of government of Brunei is 'Kebawah Duli Yang Maha Mulia (KDYMM) Paduka Seri Baginda Sultan dan Yang Di-Pertuan Negara Brunei Darussalam.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Granville-Edge, P. J. (1999). The Sabahan: The Life And Death of Tun Fuad Stephens. ISBN 978-983-40114-0-6.
  2. ^ a b The head of state in Singapore: An historical perspective in Managing Political Change in Singapore: The Elected Presidency', Kevin Tan, Peng Er Lam, Routledge, 1997, page 9
  3. ^ The Istana, K. K. Seet, Peter Mealin, Times Editions, 2000, page 88
  4. ^ Republic of Singapore Independence Act (Original Enactment: Act 9 of 1965)
  5. ^ "Chancellory - Universiti Brunei Darussalam". Archived from the original on 2016-09-15. Retrieved 2016-03-04.