Wednesday, 19 January 2011

3. Dr Pandak Ahmad bin Alang Sidin (1892-1965)

Dr Pandak Ahmad bin Alang Sidin (1892-1965)

Date of birth: 22 April 1892 [date given in CV supplied was 22 April 1883]?
Place of birth: Kampung Kledang, Mukim Kota Lama Kanan, Kuala Kangsar, Perak
Date of demise: 4 May 1965, aged 71 [73/82]?
Place of demise: At home in Kota Lama Kanan


There are only 3 known photos of Dr Pandak Ahmad:
1. The one used above
2. A Hajj portrait
3. A portrait recently found by his granddaughter Salida Salleh in 2015.


1901-1903 - Sekolah Melayu Kota Lama Kanan, Primary 1-3
1904 -           Sekolah Melayu Kuala Kangsar, Standard 4
1905-1911 - Malay Residential School (became Malay College Kuala Kangsar).
                     Completed Standard IX. Passed Senior Cambridge Examination.
1912-1915 - Straits and Federated Malay States Government Medical School in Singapore
                     (renamed the King Edward VII Medical School).
                     5 years medical course; he fell ill from beri-beri and missed 1 year of studies.
1 April 1914 - he reported for duty (could be as a Volunteer Corps?)*
                       *Note: The medical students possibly all joined the Volunteer Corps as
                         WW1 was approaching - just 3 months away.
                         The other known medical student volunteers were
                         (Dr) SIM Ibrahim and (Dr) AO Merican.
March 1916 - graduated with LMS diploma from KE VII College of Medicine, Singapore

Government Service

There were general hospitals and district hospitals in Perak.

1 April 1916 - District Hospital Taiping
3 March 1917 - District Hospital Kuala Kangsar
19 February 1919 - General Hospital Taiping
27 September 1919 - General Hospital Batu Gajah
August 1921 - Hospital Seremban
Undated(?) - Hospital Tanjung Rambutan
December 1922 - District Hospital Kuala Kangsar (7 years)
October 1929 - District Hospital Mentakab/Hospital Temerloh(?)
December 1931 - District Hospital Pekan (1 year)
Served the villages and towns along Sungai Pahang (known as River Doctor).

31 December 1932 - Resigned as a Govt doctor.
                                  Returned to Kuala Kangsar to start private practice.

Hajj Doctor

He served as a Government Hajj Doctor on two Hajj trips, in 1936 and 1952-54.
He travelled on board a ship (ocean liner).

Private Practice

His clinic was located at 2 locations.
He initially started private practice in Kuala Kangsar town (urban clinic)
His wooden house was built in Kg Kota Lama Kanan in 1933.
He then operated his private clinic at the ground level of his wooden house in 1937 (rural clinic).
This was the first rural clinic set up by a Malay doctor in British Malaya.

His patients knew him as Dr Pandak Ahmad or Dr Ahmad
His immediate relatives and close friends called him Andak
He was also known as Haji Ahmad
He was also well-known as "Doktor Sungai" (River Doctor)
He visited his patients using a 25-foot long dug-out canoe
His granddaughter (Dr Rohani Salleh) recalls seeing the canoe and playing with his medical books, with her sister and cousins, at her grandmother's house.

Altogether, he practised for 49 years before he passed away at age 71/73(?).
His home clinic was destroyed by major floods in 1946 (9 years after set up) and 1966 (after he died).
His house is still extant, but his clinic was destroyed by floods.
His diary was also lost in the flood.

Political Involvement

He was initially with Majlis Ulama when it was part of UMNO
When Majlis Ulama withdrew from UMNO and formed PAS, he joined PAS
He was a nationalist.


He had 4 wives: 1. Unnamed, 2. Unnamed, 3. Hajah Aishah, 4. Unnamed.
He had 9 children from his third wife - 4 sons and 5 daughters.
His sons Haji Ahmad Mahayuddin, Haji Mohammad Ali, and Haji Salleh are deceased.
His surviving son is Othman.
His daughters are Hajah Habsah, Rokiah (deceased), Hajah Sarah, Khadijah, and Hajah Rahmah.

Haji Ahmad Mahayuddin's daughter is Salamiah.
Hajah Sarah's daughter is Prof Jamaiah Ibrahim, at Universiti Malaya (UM)
Haji Mohammad Ali's son is Haji Ahmad Tajuddin, an architect, based in Penang.
Khadijah's son is Abdul Malek bin Mohd Said, an engineer.
Haji Salleh's daughters are Puan Salida - a lawyer, and Dr Rohani - with Universiti Teknologi Petronas (UTP).
Hajah Rahmah's daughters are Nurulaina and Azimatul Zuhra, who are staff nurses.

Granddaughter Salamiah is married to Abdul Aziz, a nephew of Datuk Dr Ariffin Ngah Marzuki.
Granddaughter Prof Jamaiah Ibrahim can be contacted in LinkedIn.
Grandson Ar. Haji Ahmad Tajuddin can be contacted via his company's website.
Granddaughter Puan Salida Salleh is in Facebook.
Granddaughter Dr Rohani Salleh can be contacted via WhatsApp.

Please refer to my book for more details - Biography of the Early Malay Doctors 1900-1957 Malaya and Singapore (Xlibris 2012).


Anonymous said...

Dr Pandak Ahmad... he's my great-great grandfather. I never got the chance to meet him, of course, but still remember how we (my sister and cousins) used to "play" with his piles of medical books in my grandma's house in Kota Lama Kanan, Kuala Kangsar. ... The 25-foot canoe was still there when I was small but was later sold to someone... Really, knowing about the historical value it has, the best place for it now is really.. a museum (perhaps in Taiping), so that it can be well preserved and viewed by the public... I'm so proud to be his grand-daughter..
Al-Fatihah to Tok..

Dr Rohani Salleh
Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS

Faridah said...

Dear Dr Rohani Salleh,

Thank you for stopping by and for your comment. Dr Pandak Ahmad had been a great doctor and contributed significantly to medicine in the early days before Independence. I'm glad we have your wonderful great-great grandfather listed here and for the book.

My salam to your family.

Prof Faridah

Anonymous said...

Salam Prof,
There's a slight mistake in my earlier post. He's actually my grandfather... not great-great grandfather. My apology...

Faridah said...


I thought so you got it wrong. Thank you for correcting it. I visited your parent's home once long ago before your father passed away. When exactly did he pass away? How old was he? Salam takziah from us. I heard about your father's death from his friend, Cikgu Shaari (Kirkby) - he's in Facebook. How is your mum? Is your sister still baking chocolate cakes? Please give me your e-mail. TQ

Prof Faridah