Sultan Ibrahim visits his former principal

GEORGE TOWN: It may have been 40 years since Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar left his secondary school, but the Johor Ruler has not forgotten his former principal Yeong Siew Mun.Over the years, he would regularly send his aides to bring cakes and nasi kandar to Yeong’s house here.

And yesterday, he personally dropped by Yeong’s house in Island Glades, much to the delight of the 81-year-old former educator and his wife Eileen How.

Yeong was informed of his former student’s plan to visit him on Friday.

“We were astounded. We offered to go to the Johor Palace to greet the Sultan, but were informed by his aide that he insisted on coming here,” said How, who was the first to receive the information on the planned visit.

The Sultan arrived in Penang in his private jet and he later drove a white Jeep Grand Cherokee to Yeong’s house together with his entourage and arrived at about 11am.

Yeong, who was the principal of Johor Baru’s Maktab Sultan Abu Bakar from 1971 to 1975, greeted him at the gate to his double-storey semi-detached home where he has lived since 1976.

“How are you, sir? It’s very nice to see you’re well,” Sultan Ibrahim greeted Yeong with gracious humility.

He then took off his shoes and entered Yeong’s home where he chatted with his former principal, reminiscing about their Maktab Sultan Abu Bakar’s days.

They also brought up the subject of a certain cane.

© Provided by The Star Online In an interview later, Yeong revealed that the cane was a gift from Sultan Ibrahim’s father, Almarhum Sultan Iskandar.

“When Tuanku was a schoolboy, his father who was then the Raja Muda of Johor, summoned me to the palace.

“During the meeting, the Raja Muda told Tuanku to fetch a cane hanging on the wall. He then presented the cane to me and said: ‘If my son misbehaves, by all means, use this cane’.

“But though Sultan Ibrahim could be playful at times, I never needed to use that cane,” he said.

How served her guest chilled chrysanthemum tea, and the Sultan, after taking a sip, commented: “Hmmm, water in Penang is sweet”.

After about 20 minutes of chatting and presenting Yeong with a medallion and a watch commemorating his coronation, Sultan Ibrahim then took Yeong and How, their son, daughter-in-law and also their grandson out for lunch.

Yeong said Sultan Ibrahim’s visit to his home was an honour beyond his wildest dream. – The Star Online

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