Saturday, August 8, 2020

Maharaja Abu Bakar of Johor

Abu Bakar was born into the family of the Temenggung of Johor on February 3, 1833 at Teluk Belanga, Singapore. He died on June 4, 1895, in London, England.

He also known as Albert Baker, was the 21st Sultan of Johor. Abu Bakar received his informal education on the recitation of al-Qur’√Čn and other basic Islamic matters from his father. He received his formal education at a boarding school established by Rev. Benjamin Peach Keasberry (1811-75) in Singapore.

On February 1, 1862, he succeeded his father with the title Temenggung Seri Maharaja Johor. He elevated his title to maharaja in 1868, and in 1885 he was acknowledged by Great Britain as sultan of Johore.

Considered to be the “Father of Modern Johor”, Abu Bakar developed Johor’s infrastructure, administrative system, military and civil service, all of which were modelled closely along Western lines.

He is described “as a young man half in the old traditional Malay world and half in the world of a cosmopolitan British port.” However, in the early days of Malay Nationalism, Abu Bakar was given Islamic credentials. He maintained independence from Britain and stimulated economic development in Johore at a time when most Southeast Asian states were being incorporated into European colonial empires.
Maharaja Abu Bakar of Johor

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