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Jakarta Post

Conflict resurfaces in Pakualaman after coronation of new prince

  • Bambang Muryanto

    The Jakarta Post

Yogyakarta   /   Sat, January 9, 2016   /  03:05 pm

Less than 24 hours into his reign as prince of Pakualaman, Kanjeng Gusti Pangeran Adipati Arya (KGPAA) Paku Alam X must deal with a legal challenge organized by members of the royal family who have expressed opposition to the internal succession in the centuries-old principality.

Speaking to The Jakarta Post on Friday, Kanjeng Pangeran Haryo (KPH) Wiroyudho, who represents the family of KPH Anglingkusumo, Paku Alam IX'€™s half brother, confirmed that he had sent a subpoena to Paku Alam X expressing opposition to the latter'€™s coronation.

'€œWe delivered the subpoena today [Friday] to Pakualaman Palace. It was received by the palace guards,'€ Wiroyudho said.

Earlier on Thursday, Paku Alam X, born Raden Mas Wijoseno Hario Bimo, was crowned prince of Pakualaman, succeeding his father, Paku Alam IX, who died on Nov. 22.

Wiroyudho, Anglingkusumo'€™s son-in-law, however, said that Hario Bimo was not eligible to become prince, as he failed to meet the most important criterion; namely, being the biological son, born in wedlock, of a ruler or heir.

Wiroyudho said Hario Bimo was the son of Bendara Raden Mas (BRM) Ambarkusumo, who was crowned Paku Alam IX in 1999, and Marsini binti Hardjoprawiro, whom Bendara married on Feb. 27, 1963. Hario Bimo, however, was born on Dec. 15, 1962.

'€œWe'€™re well aware of the family history and family tree. There is strong evidence that pushes us to declare that Hario Bimo as Paku Alam is illegitimate,'€ Wiroyudho said.

The subpoena, he went on, also mentioned that Hario Bimo had been involved in the lease or sale of Pakualaman-owned lands in Kulon Progo regency, Yogyakarta, without the consent of the royal family.

'€œOne of the cases includes the sale of a sandy area to be developed into an airport and iron sand mine,'€ he said.

Anglingkusumo camp lawyer Adi Susanto said that his clients had decided to send the subpoena after their expressions of opposition to the coronation were gracelessly received.

'€œThe subpoena requires no answer. This is a legal step toward further legal steps, including civil and criminal lawsuits,'€ Adi said.

Pakualaman is a small autonomous kingdom with royal authority related to that of the Yogyakarta sultanate, currently led by Hamengkubuwono X.

Pakualaman was founded in 1813 by Paku Alam I, almost 60 years after his father, Hamengkubuwono I, founded the Yogyakarta sultanate.

After a conflict with his brother, sultan Hamengkubuwono II, Paku Alam I received support from the British government to establish Pakualaman, whose territory covers the district of Pakualaman in Yogyakarta and parts of Kulon Progo.

Soon after Indonesia declared independence in 1945, Yogyakarta'€™s king Hamengkubuwono IX and the Pakualaman leader Paku Alam VIII announced their allegiance to the newly established country. Both agreed to jointly maintain Yogyakarta under the newly formed Indonesian government but with a special region status.

Leadership disputes within the Pakualaman royal family date back to 1998 and the death of Paku Alam VIII. The conflict has primarily involved Anglingkusumo, the fourth son of Paku Alam VIII'€™s first wife KRAy Retnaningrum, and Ambarkusumo, the first son of Paku Alam VIII'€™s second wife KRAy Purnamaningrum.

Separately, KPH Kusumo Parasto, the head of the Hudiono family, a branch of the ruling dynasty that supports Hario Bimo, said the newly crowned prince was a legitimate prince of Pakualaman because his bloodline was clear.

'€œHe is the grandson of Paku Alam VIII and the son of Paku Alam IX,'€ Kusumo said.