Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and several other cabinet members were spotted last night as Malacca Chief Minister Mohd Ali Rustam feted 900 guests at his eldest son's second wedding banquet.

A more subdued affair compared to the giant Malacca reception, which made it into the Malaysia Book of Records for attracting 130,000 guests, the event at five-star Royale Chulan Hotel was not without glamour.

Dressed in maroon to match his wife and two younger children, who flanked him during his speech, Mohd Ali took several minutes just to read out the list of guests of honour.

ali rustam wedding royal chulan 071012 pahang sultanThey included Pahang's Sultan Ahmad Shah (left), members of the Perlis royal family, PM Najib and wife, his deputy Muhyiddin Yassin and wife, as well as former premiers Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Others present were the governors of Sarawak and Malacca, as well as dignitaries from Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore and Sri Lanka.

Also spotted were chief secretary to the government Ali Hamsa, former home minister Syed Hamid Albar, Perak Menteri Besar Zambry Abdul Kadir and Johor MB Abdul Ghani Othman.

Media bosses from Media Prima, which owns all free-to-air TV stations, Berita Harian and Utusan Malaysia were also in the list.

The red carpet event caused a minor gridlock outside the hotel, with two traffic police officers directing the traffic in otherwise quiet Jalan Stonor as drivers fetched their VIPs passengers in luxury cars, many accompanied by outriders.

Rickshaws greet guests

The groom, Mohd Ridhwan and wife Dr Nur Azieha Mohd Ali, both 26, wore white songket and sat on a gold pelamin, extravagantly fashioned after a traditional Malay house.

ali rustam son's wedding kenduri in royale chulan kl 2Wearing an elaborate gold headdress, Nur Azieha accompanied her husband to cut a five-tier ‘pulut kuning' ensemble, in keeping with Malay tradition.

Guests were served the customary ‘nasi minyak', as they were serenaded with classic Malay songs by the Malacca Art Brigade.

Lights at the ballroom changed from purple to orange, while the tables were decorated with orchids in keeping with the colour theme.

The Malacca spirit was felt with the presence of heavily ornamented rickshaws greeting guests at the entrance of the grand ballroom.

ali rustam wedding royal chulan 071012 koh tsu koonThe rickshaws were seen transported to the hotel on Malacca City Council trucks earlier, while state agency Yayasan Melaka and Malacca Chief Minister's Department buses were spotted at the car park.

In his speech, Mohd Ali alluded to the controversy over the record-breaking Malacca reception, which has sparked an investigation by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission over allegations that state agencies were used to organise the private wedding.

Wedding caught interest of many

"The happiest moment in a parent's life is during their child's wedding, especially if it is their first-born.

"I have waited for this for a while and the wedding has even caught the interest of many, including certain parties," he said, to ripples of laughter from the guests.

ali rustam wedding royal chulan 071012 ali rustamMohd Ali said, tongue-in-cheek, that he had advised his son not to follow his footsteps and marry at 36, "or else his father would get married (again) before him".

"So he felt pity for his mother and at 26, he has gotten married and ‘saved' my wife," he quipped.

He also advised his son and new daughter-in-law that misunderstandings happen in marriage, but it is best to be patient.

"Even your tongue gets bitten once in a while, so as husband and wife, you would do a lot of biting," he said, as the young couple laughed at the main table.

Mohd Ali, a controversial Umno leader, was party vice-president for five years from 2004 to 2009.

He tried to contest for deputy president in 2009 at the party elections, but was disqualified after being found guilty of vote buying.