Druk Gyalpo Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck - The biography of the 5th king PROLOGUE:
The Early Years
A New Era Begins
“I won’t live long enough to see his reign but I feel the future of the country is safe.”
- A Grandmother in Trongsa.
A BRILLIANT EASTERN SUN ROSE on the 18th day of the ninth month of the Bhutanese calendar, corresponding to October 31, 2004. The road to Trongsa Dzong, arguably the kingdom’s most dramatic and venerable fortress, was lined with men, women, children, dignitaries and invited foreign guests. Incense wafted on the breeze, butter lamps flickered in the air, and flags waved in eager hands.
AN ANCIENT TRADITION: From the office of the Chhoetse Penlop to the Bhutanese Throne
The institution of the Chhoetse Penlop—sometimes less formally known as the Trongsa Penlop—is indelibly linked to the dramatic and picturesque Trongsa Dzong and the culturally and historically rich region it straddles. The story, perhaps, should really begin in the 1540s when the Lama Dubthob Ngagi Wangchuk arrived in the green and fertile region caressed by the milk-white coils of the Mangdue River.
Ascension to the Throne
“This is a wondrous moment in time and we have the incredible privilege of expressing our deep gratitude and appreciation to His Majesty the fourth Druk Gyalpo, our hopes in His Majesty the fifth Druk Gyalpo, and our unwavering faith in the sacred legacy we call the Bhutanese system.”
- Editorial in Kuensel, Bhutan’s National Newspaper, Saturday, December 16, 2006.
The Fifth Druk Gyalpo, His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, was ushered to the Dragon throne nearly as unexpectedly as his illustrious father 35 years ago.
Roadmap to the Future
“If we can build a strong economy, we will have the unshakeable foundations for a vibrant democracy.”
- His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck.
In the past year as king, His Majesty Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck has clearly stepped out of his father’s considerable shadow to unveil a vision and leadership style distinctly his own.
Along with a clear grasp of the emerging challenges and opportunities, he brings an enthusiastic and motivational approach to rallying the new Bhutanese nation to the task ahead.
His Majesty Jigme Khesar’s Address on National Day, December 17, 2006
As I stand before you today, on the auspicious occasion of the National Day of Bhutan, I find myself at a loss for words. For 34 years His Majesty the King has been the heart and essence of the nation, her King and guardian, our parent and inspiration.
The immense achievements of His Majesty, including the legacy of a sound democratic constitutional monarchy, are milestones not only in the history of our small kingdom but that of the world.