the help didn’t exactly come without a price, though.

great-great granddad would be sultan with the quid pro quo agreement that the british will appoint one james wheeler woodford birch as the resident who would advise him on administrative and taxation affairs, short of hal ehwal orang-orang melayu. on top of that, great-great granddad had to also pay birch’s salary. the cheek!

the agreement between great-great granddad and the british was signed on board the HMS pluto off the coast of pulau pangkor on january 20th, 1874. great-great granddad was now HH paduka seri sultan abdullah muhammad shah II, whilst sultan ismail was deposed and made sultan muda. and as everyone knows, the people of perak, led by datuk maharaja lela, weren’t exactly too chuffed with the meddlesome ways of birch. birch was assassinated in pasir salak in 1875 and great-great granddad was sent into exile to the seychelles in 1877 for his indirect involvement. raja yusuf (of sayong fame) was then made regent by the british (only to be installed as sultan in 1887, after ten years).

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