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Indonesia Marks National Heroes Day by Naming 6 New National Heroes

November 11, 2020, 03.02 AM – President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo has marked Indonesia’s 75th Heroes Day on November 10 by bestowing the title of National Hero to six historical Indonesian figures.
The President gave the titles to the recipients’ heirs.

“[A characteristic] that defined these heroes is that they exist in every era [in Indonesian history]. They also welcomed the challenges of their time,” said Jokowi in his Instagram account @jokowi on November 10.

“I hope that Indonesians today can be inspired from their sacrifices and their fight in facing contemporary problems such as breaking the transmission of Covid-19, which plagued [Indonesia] over the past 8 months.”

Also read: Foreign Leaders Congratulate Indonesia on 75th Independence Day

The heroes included Sultan Baabullah, a 16th century Sultan from the Sultanate of Ternate in present-day North Maluku province. Baabullah earned the title by driving off the Portuguese, and presiding over the Sultanate’s golden age during his reign between 1570 and 1583.

Machmud Singgirei Rumagesan, the king of the Segar region in the present-day Fakfak regency of West Papua, earned his title by fighting against the Dutch colonial government and establishing the Tjendrawasih Revolutionary Movement of West Irian or GTRIB ahead of Indonesia’s annexation of the area in 1962.

Baabullah and Machmud are both the first national heroes from their respective provinces.

Another historical figure was Raden Mattaher Bin Pangeran Kusen bin Adi, a 19th century warlord from Jambi province who fought the Dutch from his accession in 1871 to his death in battle in 1907.

Also read: A Solemn, Low-Key Ceremony to Mark Indonesia's 75th Independence Day Amid Covid-19 Scourge

Others are more recent historical personages from Indonesia’s early years of independence. They include Police General Raden Said Soekanto Tjokrodiatmodjo, the first head of the Indonesian National Police whose tenure lasted from September 1945 until December 1959.

Another is three-time Information Minister Arnold Mononutu from North Sulawesi, who served in the post between 1949 and 1953 before becoming Indonesia’s first ambassador to China that same year until 1955.

Amin Nasution, the first governor of North Sumatra Province from 1948 to 1953, capped off the list.

President Jokowi also paid his respects to Indonesia’s national heroes at the Kalibata Heroes Cemetery in Jakarta.

The cemetery is the resting place of former president BJ Habibie, former vice presidents Soedarmono and Adam Malik, as well as Kompas Gramedia founder Jakob Oetama and other figures.

Indonesia designated November 10 as the country's Heroes Day as it marks the Battle of Surabaya, a confrontation between Indonesian independence fighters and British forces in 1945 that resulted in a strategic victory for the former. 

(Writers: Jawahir Gustav Rizal, Dwi Nur Hayati | Editors: Rizal Setyo Nugroho, Mikhael Gewati)


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