The Yang di-Pertua Negeri (literally the "head of state" in Malay) is the official title of the ceremonial governors of the Malaysian states without monarchs (hereditary heads of state), namely Penang, Malacca, Sabah and Sarawak. They are appointed to renewable four-year terms by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (Paramount Ruler, King), the federal head of state of Malaysia on the advice of the Prime Minister after consulting the state governments. A Yang di-Pertua Negeri is entitled to the style Tuan Yang Terutama (T.Y.T.), or in English, His Excellency.
A Yang di-Pertua Negeri functions as a head of state in a parliamentary democracy. His discretionary roles include appointing the head of government, the Ketua Menteri or Chief Minister (usually the leader of the major party in the state legislature), and withholding consent to dissolve the state legislature. On all other matters, he must act on the advice of the Chief Minister, such as appointing the members of the state's Executive Council (known as Cabinet in Sabah and Sarawak), conferring state honours and granting pardons for offences committed in his state (except pardons for court martial and syariah offences, which are granted by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong).
There are two major distinctions between the constitutional roles of the nine hereditary rulers and the four Yang di-Pertua Negeri. While the Yang di-Pertua Negeri are members of the Conference of Rulers, they cannot participate in the election of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, discussions related to the privileges of the Malay rulers and matters concerning the observance of Islam. In addition, the Yang di-Pertua Negeri do not function as the Head of Islam in their states; the role is fulfilled by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.
Before 1976, the heads of state of Penang, Malacca and Sarawak were titled Governor in English and Yang di-Pertua Negeri in Malay, whereas the head of state of Sabah was titled Yang di-Pertua Negara in both languages. Singapore had a Yang di-Pertuan Negara when it gained self-government under British sovereignty in 1959. The title was used by the state governor while Singapore was a part of Malaysia between 1963 and 1965, when it was expelled from Malaysia to become an independent republic. Since 1976 the heads of state of Penang, Malacca, Sabah and Sarawak have been titled Yang di-Pertua Negeri in both languages.
Current Yang di-Pertua Negeri
The following is a table of Yang di-Pertua Negeri of each state: