Coronation Special

To celebrate the Sultan’s coronation, a collection of my stories with a royal flavour.  

At the coronation of HRH Sultan Ibrahim as the state’s fifth sultan in the history of modern Johor, it is timely to look back to the founding of Johor by Temenggong Daeng Ibrahim (1825 to 1862) and the establishment Iskandar Puteri. 

To open up the jungles in Johor, Temenggong Daeng Ibrahim wisely encouraged Chinese pepper and gambier planters from Singapore and Indonesia to expand their plantations here.  The arrival of Chinese labour and capital changed the state’s economic and social structure.  The cultivation of rubber made a similar impact through European investment and the import of Indian labour.  In the early 1920s pineapple growing was introduced while rubber continued to be Johor’s chief agricultural produce until it was overtaken by oil palm recently.  

Kampung Wadi Hassan and Kampung Wadi Hana, named after the pioneers, are a legacy of the Arab community in Johor Baru.  Members of the Sikh community here were labourers and cattle herdsmen or found employment with the Police and as watchmen and security guards.  Agriculture, once the backbone of the state’s economy, and the early development of Johor, brought together pioneering groups of Malay, Chinese, Indian and Europeans in a melting pot of people that form the core community in the Johor raykat today.

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