PAGOH, April 14 — Despite being a long way from home, newly-minted Johor Mentri Besar Dr Sahruddin Jamal first task today was to return to his mother’s home in Batu 28 Lenga here to seek her blessings on his new role.
Immediately after his maiden press conference at the Johor Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) office in Kempas, Johor Baru this morning, the 43-year-old Bukit Kepong assemblyman made it a point to return to the village in north Johor where he grew up.
Accompanied by his wife Dr Nila Armila Mukdan, Dr Sahruddin travelled 168km to his mother’s house where a simple kampung-style thanksgiving lunch was held.
Oblivious to his new position as the state’s mentri besar, he casually walked out of his official car and proceeded to bow down to kiss his mother’s hand.
He later sought his mother’s blessings on his new position as Johor’s mentri besar.
Dr Sahruddin was later joined by his other family members and close friends and proceeded to the nearby mosque for the Zohor and Asar prayers, before he returned to his house in Temiang.
Dr Sahruddin’s mother, Isniah Kasmongin, 73, said she never expect her eighth child to one day be at the helm of the state government.
“You must understand, we are simple kampung folk who used to tap rubber for a living and this is indeed a surprise for the family.
“Syukur Alhamdulillah, because my son (Dr Sahruddin) has been appointed as the mentri besar,” she said when met by by Malay Mail outside her house today.
Isniah said as a mother, she will pray that Dr Sahruddin can perform his duties with full responsibility and trust.
“He is a good son and will call me daily to check on me,” said Isniah, who has 10 children.
Earlier this morning, Dr Sahruddin was sworn in by Johor ruler Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar as the state’s 17th mentri besar at Istana Bukit Serene in Johor Baru.
Previously the Johor Health, Environment and Agriculture Committee chairman, he succeeded Datuk Osman Sapian who stepped down on April 8.
Born on May 26, 1975, the Johor PPBM secretary holds a medical degree from Universiti Hasanuddin in Makassar, Indonesia.
Before entering politics, he operated his own clinic in Bukit Pasir near Muar.