DYAM Raja Kamaralzaman ibni Raja Ngah Mansur (Raja Di-Hilir: 1948-1962)

Raja Kamaralzaman aged 26 in 1918 as Assistant District Officer, Tapah. (Source: Arkib Negara Malaysia)

DYAM Raja Kamaralzaman bin Raja Mansur was born at Kota Lama Kiri, Kuala Kangsar on 28 September 1892. He was the grandson of Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II. He was educated at the Malay College Kuala Kangsar from 1905. where he was the first Head Boy during the Headship of William Hargreaves. At College, he was a keen footballer and was Captain of a team called ‘The Moderates’. He was fondly known as Engku Kam (pronounced cam).

After leaving MCKK, Raja Kam reported for duty to the District Officer in Seremban as Malay Settlement Officer in Negeri Sembilan on 1 June 1910, with a modest salary of $720 per annum. He was also a 1st. Malay Assistant to R.O. Winstedt (later Sir), who was then the District Officer for Kuala Pilah, for four years.

Raja Kam later joined the Malay Administrative Service in 1917. Then in 1927, he was transferred to the Malayan Civil Service (his uncle Raja Kechil Tengah Said Tauphy ibni Sultan Abdullah was the first Malay officer to be absorbed into the MCS in 1917). He joined the FMS Volunteer Force in 1928 as a Lieutenant. Later, he was promoted as District Officer of Bentong from 1932 to 1933 prior to his appointment as Magistrate of Seremban from 1933 to 1934, before been transferred back to Kerian as DO for three years beginning 1934.

Together with Raja Tun Uda Raja Muhammad (later the first Governor of Pulau Pinang), Raja Kam was appointed an ‘unofficial’ Member of the Federal Council by the High Commissioner of the FMS in 1936. It was common practice for a Malay Civil Servant of outstanding ability to be made an ‘unofficial’ member. During this time, Raja Kam had taken the initiative to propose that the Sungai Manik area to be made a rice bowl, as well as being a proponent in the expansion of the Malay Regiment.

Raja Di-Hilir Kamaralzaman, in his official black and silver traditional Raja Di-Hilir colours. (Personal collection of YM Raja Muzaffar Kamaralzaman)

He was also the State Treasurer of Perak from 1938 to 1941. During the Japanese invasion of Malaya in 1941, he brought the Treasury of Perak with him to Kuala Lumpur (to bakor duit orang puteh – this subject will be dealt with in SembangKuala in due course).

Raja Kam was granted the title of Raja Kechil Bongsu on 10 May 1934 before promoted to Raja Kechil Muda (this title was abolished in 1953) on 1 January 1940 and to Raja Kechil Tengah[*] on 7 September 1940. He retired from the Malayan Civil Service in 1946, after which he performed the Haj.

Raja Kam was awarded with an OBE by George VI in 1948, and soon after, on 15 July 1948, he was appointed YAM Raja di-Hilir upon the demise of Almarhum Sultan Abdul Aziz.

Raja Kamaralzaman. This photo was taken circa 1955, aged 63. (Source: Arkib Negara Malaysia)

Despite being retired from civil service, Raja Kam held several voluntary appointments:
1. Constitutional Committee in drawing up the Constitution of the Federation of Malaya
2. Chairman of the State Committee for Territorial Chiefs of Perak
3. President of the Perak Department of Religious Affairs
4. served as a board member on the Federal Pilgrimage Board (now Lembaga Urusan dan Tabung Haji)
5. served on the governing body of the Kinta Electric Distribution Company

Raja Kam was appointed CMG by Queen Elizabeth II in 1955.

Raja Kam mangkat from a stroke in Taiping on 19 July 1962. It was described that Almarhumah Raja Perempuan Kelsom even attended to the decoration of the coffin carrying Raja Kam’s jenazah. The hearse carrying his jenazah to Bukit Chandan was accompanied by his sons, Raja Biazid (who carried all of Raja Kam’s medals on a cushion) and Raja Muzaffar.

Raja Kam had issue, twenty three children in all.

Raja Kam had been described as a man with an unfailing sense of humour and charm. His sportsmanship did not end during his days at the Malay College. He had played polo with Almarhum Sultan Iskandar, was billiards champ of the Ipoh Club (until 1951) and a keen marksman with the rifle. He was well known and liked by the administrative circle and the different communities, and he was aptly described as ‘the smiling civil servant’ by the late Mubin Sheppard.

_________________________________

Footnote:
[*] There appears to be a discrepancy noted in the RoyalArk.net page on Raja Kam’s appointment in 1934, which was stated as being Raja Kechil Besar. According to the heir system of Raja Kechil Berempat in 1934, the RKB is the highest rank only next to Raja Di-Hilir. This is felt to be somewhat unlikely by the Editors and we are of the opinion that he was likely Raja Kechil Bongsu (and this is reiterated in Sheppard’s article in Malaya In History) in 1934, as he was then promoted to Raja Kechil Muda in 1940. The unusual thing that occurred following this was the shuffling of the Raja Kechil Berempat hierarchy in which the Raja Kechil Tengah now outranked the RKM, which saw him being appointed to RKT following the reshuffle.
[**] There is a street in Canning Garden, Ipoh named Jalan Raja Kam after Raja Kamaralzaman.

Reference:
1. RoyalArk.net
2. Arkib Negara Malaysia
3. Sheppard M. The late Raja Kamaralzaman – Raja Di-Hilir Perak. The smiling civil servant. Malaya In History. 1962; VIII (1): 37-38.
4. Raja Mansur RK. Some early impressions. In MCKK Impressions (1905-2005). p 5-6.
5. Mahariz Muzaffar. The smiling civil servant. 無秩序の胃. 2005. Available from http://stomachofchaos.com/?p=284

26 thoughts on “DYAM Raja Kamaralzaman ibni Raja Ngah Mansur (Raja Di-Hilir: 1948-1962)

  1. hey, we’ve got both these photos (without the arkib negara watermark, of course – hehe, obviously!). with regards the 1918 ADO Tapah photo, i agree that the quality of the photo does seem 1910-ish, and he does look young enough for 26. which brings me to the question regarding the group photo purported to be taken in 1918 as well. i’m no real expert, but the photo looked a bit more ‘recent’ and tok kam does look a little older. check out the enlarged version of the .jpeg – he does have a little paunch and does not appear the slender young man he was in the ADO photo above.

    can you reconfirm that the group photo was taken 1918?

  2. Salah seorang daripada bapa saudara sepupu patik (YM Raja Mushar bin Raja Ahmad bin Raja Hamzah) berasal daripada zuriat keturunan DYAM Raja Kamaralzaman ibn Raja Ngah Mansur ibn Almarhum Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II (Marhum Habibullah) melalui jalur bondanya, Raja Zaleha bt. Raja Kamaralzaman.

  3. Assalammualaikum YM Raja Mahariz Muzaffar

    Patik ni sebenarnya pangkat anak saudara kepada Engku Ayah Raja Mushar bin Raja Ahmad. Raja Mushar married to my father’s cousin, Raja Saidatul Zahariah bt. Raja Lope Shaharuddin b. Raja Muhammad.

    Engku Ayah Mushar tu kami panggil dia “Ayah Intan”. Memang dia pernah kerja bomba dan dah lama pun pencen. Dia sekeluarga menetap di Tmn. Sri Kota, Taiping sekarang ni dan sibuk jaga cucunya. Alhamdulillah, Ayah Intan masih sihat.

    Last patik jumpa Ayah Intan pada 8 Ogos 2009 lepas masa kami menghadiri mesyuarat pertama Jawatankuasa Penaja Persatuan Kerabat Diraja Perak Darul Ridzuan di Istana Kalsom, Kuala Kangsar.

  4. Assalammualaikum YM Raja Mahariz Muzaffar

    Patik ini anak saudara kepada Raja Mushar bin Raja Ahmad. Kami semua panggil dia “Ayah Intan”. Engku Ayah Intan tu berkahwin dengan my father’s cousin, Raja Saidatul Zahariah bt. Raja Lope Shaharuddin bin Raja Muhammad. Engku Ayah Intan sekarang menetap di Tmn. Sri Kota, Taiping. Memang betul Ku Ayah Intan tu pernah berkhidmat dengan bomba dan dah lama dia pencen. Dia sekarang ni sibuk menjaga 3 orang cucunya di rumah.

    Alhamdulillah, Ku Ayah Intan masih sihat dan kali terakhir kami bertemu adalah pada 8 Ogos 2009 semasa kami menghadiri mesyuarat pertama Jawatankuasa penubuhan Persatuan Kerabat Diraja Perak Darul Ridzuan di Istana Kalsom, Kuala Kangsar.

  5. Salam Ku Mahariz…

    Apa khabar Ku Mahariz? Nak nyatakan satu info, baru-baru ni hari Sabtu lepas (10 Oktober 2009), Ayah Intan (YM Raja Mushar bin Raja Ahmad) datang ke rumah patik di Kulim, Kedah. Dia datang dengan semua ahli keluarganya, termasuk wifenya YM Raja Saidatul Zahariah bt. Raja Lope Shaharuddin dan dua orang anakandanya, YM Raja Ahmad Kamal bin Raja Mushar dan Raja Saidatul Shahariah bt. Raja Mushar (Ku Senyum). Alhamdulillah, Ayah Intan masih sihat. Patik ambil kesempatan bersogheh dengan dia berkenaan mothernya Raja Long Zaleha bt. Raja Hj Kamaralzaman (Raja Di Hilir Perak) ibn Raja Ngah Mansur ibn Almarhum Sultan Abdullah II. Dia pun bersama sepupunya (YM Raja Shah Riman bin Raja Yusof) menunjukkan carta salasilahnya keluarga sebelah ayahanda dan bonda beliau untuk tatapan patik sekeluarga. Sangat menarik….

  6. salam engku

    alhamdulillah to hear that. patik actually tak pernah bertemu abang intan, tapi bebaru ni berjumpa with a lot(!) of his sisters (one of whom, raja datin asmah raja ahmad, patik kenal dari kecik walaupun jarang jumpa!) kat rumah ayah saudara patik pada weekend raya pertama di KL.

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  8. Auw…another cousin for us, Mahariz? Cool…great stuff on our Grandad, bro. Must, must keep track of these information! Cheers.

  9. Mahariz, another distant cousins to your website….Iam also known as Wah to your father Ayah Pa, Cousins to Ku cima ,ku chum , chor Intan…Im also known to Wan Ton.during my younger days.Ku cima grandfather and my grand father were brothers.my line is as such.
    1.Sultan Abdullah
    2 Raja Nuteh Fatimah
    3 Raja Sakdiah bt Raja Alang Jaafar
    4 Raja Nazran bin Raja Othman
    5 Raja Arfah Fadilah

    • Masya’Allah. Baru je ayah Pa spoke about you to me a few hours ago this morning! From the lineage, it would be appropriate to refer to you as Chor la ye? Pleased to ‘meet’ you online!

      Wan Puteh told us that you are living in KL kan? I am on holiday at the moment for two weeks. Nanti I tell ayah Pa that you’ve been in touch.

      -Mahariz

    • Assalamualaikum, to all related brothers and sisters – Mahariz / engku Wah / Ayah Pa / Raja Kassim / Iskan / Ku Shah… I wish all a Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri.

      From,
      Raja Muzaffar Kamar Raja Busu

      • Waalaikumsalam. Abg Kamar!!! Lama tak dengaq cerita. Masih kat Tanjong ka? Mahariz last pi Tanjong was in 1996, masa tu arwah Ayah Busu ada lagi – kami pi makan kat gerai nasi ayam kat Gelugoq.

        Selamat Hari Raya & Maaf Zahir Batin kat semua noo?

        -Mahariz

    • Assalamualaikum, ku wah,your father Raja Nazran Othman, he retires from the Prison Department isn’t it ? DSP Raja Nazran. I think I know him, he was in Penang between 1975 or 76 to 80’s

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  14. Salam. I just stumbled across this page by chance and pleasantly surprised to read about my late grandfather (whom I’ve never had the privilege to meet) and learn of his background. Thank you for sharing this info. Wasallam.

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