The self-proclaimed interim government of the so-called Sulu Sultanate had announced that Kota Kinabalu-based businessman Datu Mohd Akjan Datu Ali Muhammad is a direct descendent of the last reigning Sultan of Sulu, Paduka Mahasari Maulana Al-Marhum Sultan Shariful-Hashim.
Mohd Akjan was installed as the 33rd reigning Sultan of Sulu at a private ceremony attended by a group of 60 people, including his followers from Sulu province, at his home in Kampung Likas here on Feb 2.
Malaysian officials said the move implied that Mohd Akjan – a former Internal Security Act detainee – may have dual citizenship. Under Malaysian law, this is not allowed.
Asked about this, Deputy Home Minister Datuk Wira Abu Seman Yusop said: “People cannot have dual citizenships.
“Action can be taken against the businessman if the authorities find his action is a threat to public security.”
He added, however, that the Home Ministry has not received any report regarding Mohd Akjan.
Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk V.K. Liew said the Government would never recognise any self-proclaimed sultan, adding there had been many people claiming to be descendants of some sultanates.
“This is not an isolated case. It has happened in Malacca,” added Liew.
Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Hamza Taib said the police would investigate if a report was lodged against Mohd Akjan.
“We are prepared to investigate,” he said.
Hamza said Mohd Akjan’s move to declare himself a hereditary ruler would cause uneasiness among many people as it implied that he was seeking allegiance among the Suluk community (also called the Tausug, an ethnic group of Sulu and Malaysia).