Sultan, half brothers discuss succession

Yogyakarta Sultan Hamengkubuwono X met with his six younger half brothers from Jakarta on Thursday afternoon to explain his decision to name the eldest of his five daughters as the crown princess on Tuesday.The six half brothers are the sons of their father, former sultan Hamengkubuwono IX, and wife Kanjeng Raden Ayu Cipto Murti.They are Gusti Bendoro Pangeran Haryo (GBPH) Pakuningrat, GBPH Cakraningrat, GBPH Suryodiningrat, GBPH Suryomentaram, GBPH Hadinegoro and GBPH Suryonegoro.The meeting took place at the Kraton Kilen (West Palace) and lasted about two hours.

Suryodiningrat said the meeting was a relaxed and ordinary discussion between brothers.Accompanying the sultan was his eldest daughter Gusti Kanjeng Ratu Pembayun, who has been given the new title of Gusti Kanjeng Ratu Mangkubumi after being named the crown princess. Suryodiningrat, however, declined to reveal the details of the meeting and said they first needed to share them with their other brothers. “I am sorry I cannot tell you more about the meeting,”

Suryodiningrat told The Jakarta Post after the meeting.He added that the meeting was more like a forum of clarification, in which the sultan explained his actions and the six brothers listened and clarified matters.“We will have a meeting first before we decide on anything,” Suryodiningrat said.Tensions intensified between the sultan and his half brothers following his decision to name his eldest daughter his heir.

None of his brothers were reportedly present during the naming of the crown princess on Tuesday, which was conducted only five days after he issued a sabdaraja (king’s proclamation) that many considered was a move to smooth the way for his daughter to take the reins.This internal palace affair is also a matter of public interest, since Law No. 13/2012 on Yogyakarta’s special status stipulates that the ruling sultan is also the governor of the province.To help collect input from the public, the sultan’s brothers established a post at Ndalem Yudonegaran to give people the opportunity to convey their aspirations regarding the issue.The post was officially opened at 10:30 a.m. and until late afternoon groups of people were still seen arriving there.Activist Beny Susanto of the Yogyakarta NGO Forum, who was among the visitors, said those who highlighted gender in respect of this issue were not being fair.“I’m not talking about the internal regulation at the palace but the Yogyakarta Special Status Law, which implies that the governor is the sultan, not a queen,” Beny said. –

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