The Jakarta Post
Central Java Governor Ganjar Pranowo has urged concerned parties at the Mangkunegaran Palace in Surakarta to negotiate and prioritize deliberation in resolving the ongoing conflict between Sultan Paku Buwono XIII Hangabehi and his Customary Council.
Ganjar said on Monday that the palace has formed an agreement that could serve as a guide to mending the rift.
"If they can follow the guidelines, their problems can easily be solved. If they can't, it would be better for them to create a new agreement while the elders are still here," he said as quoted by Antara news agency.
Tensions between the sultan and his Customary Council escalated in 2013 after the former allegedly ignored the council’s recommendations during a reconciliation process with his brother, KGPH Panembahan Agung Tedjowulan, who challenged his legitimacy as ruler in 2004.
Ganjar said his administration has had to withhold an annual grant of Rp 5 billion (US$3.7 million) from the Surakarta palace since the conflict emerged.
Meanwhile, Central Java Police spokesman Sr. Comr. Djarod Padakova said investigators have questioned 20 witnesses in relation to the alleged forgery of a kekancingan document. Kekancingan is a ceremony that awards titles within the Surakarta sultanate.
Police searched the palace on Sunday and have sent a summons letter to witnesses.
“Today [Monday] we will question two witnesses,” Djarod said, adding that “there is a strong allegation of forgery [of the kekancingan document].”
He added that police will secure the palace until the planned ceremony commemorating Paku Buwono XIII’s coronation on Saturday. (rdi)