Malaysians were plunged into mourning over the weekend when it was learned that former Negeri Sembilan state assembly speaker Datuk Zulkefly Mohamad Omar passed away at the age of 59, as The Edge Malaysia reports.
According to the outlet, the death took place on Saturday at Sergand Hospital in Selangor.
The untimely death was confirmed by Datuk MK Ibrahim Abd Rahman, the current Negeri Sembilan state assembly speaker.
According to Abd Rahman, Zulkefly had been admitted to the hospital's intensive care unit two days prior to his death due to multiple health issues and subsequent complications.
Remarking on the weekend's sad events, Abd Rahman declared, “I was informed Zulkefly died at about 1:30 p.m. His remains will be taken to the Lenggeng Mosque for the funeral prayer after the Asar prayer.”
“May his soul be placed among the righteous,” Abd Rahman added.
According to Malay Mail, Zulkefly began his political trajectory with the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party when he sought the state assembly seat in Lenggeng back in 1999.
He also served as the party's commissioner from the period spanning 2007 to 2011.
Later moving to join the Amanah (formerly National Trust) Party, Zulkefly sought the state seat from Johol and then the Jelebu parliamentary post last November.
Zulkefly was also tapped to serve as the Negeri Sembilan State Assembly Speaker in July of 2018, which was a post held until just one month prior to his death.
As news spread of Zulkefly's demise, condolences began to pour in from the citizenry and dignitaries alike, as Malay Mail noted separately.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was among those expressing regret at the loss, posting a message to Facebook about the sad news.
Alongside a photo of Zulkefly conducting official duties during his lengthy career in government, Ibrahim conveyed his prayer that the late official's soul would be “blessed and placed among the believers and righteous.”
It appears certain that Zulkefly's years of service to Malaysia will help ensure that his memory is kept alive in the hearts of the citizenry for years to come, and hopefully, that fact will provide solace to the loved ones he leaves behind.