Controversy Grows Over Noble Title Bestowed on Deputy Speaker of DPR-RI by North Bali Royal Palace
Beritadewata.com and other local news sources report growing expressions of discontent over the granting of a royal title by the Royal Palace of Singaraja to the Deputy-speaker of the Indonesia People Representative Council (DPR-RI), Fadli Zon.
Zon was bestowed the title of “Yang Mulia Sri Paduka Raja” in a ceremony at the Palace on Friday, March 30, 2018. In granting the title, Fadli Zon’s official post at the DPR and his General Chairmanship of the Secretariat for the National Keris Association (Nasional Perkerisan Indonesia) were cited as demonstrating Zon’s service to the Nation.
The head of the Royal Household of Singaraja, Anak Agung Ngurah Ugrasen, bestowed the title on Zon on the 414th anniversary of palace that coincides with the anniversary of the founding of the City of Singaraja.
“Based on historical records, the Puri Agung Singaraja was established on March 30, 1604. That is also the date for the founding of the City of Singaraja. We are obliged to remember these dates and teach the younger generation that the Kingdom of Singaraja is one of Bali’s and Indonesia’s oldest palaces,” said Ngurah Ugrasen.
Honors were not just bestowed on Fadli Zon, but also given to leading figures and business people from Malaysia, Singapore and China who have made contributions to the development of Buleleng and givenattention to the Puri Agung Singaraja. Explaining the awards, Ngurah Ugrasen said: “We express our appreciation to both national and international figures, because of their service in safeguarding Indonesian culture. These people are also my friends who have paid great attention to the Palace and wish to help develop and advance every aspect of Buleleng.”
Fadli Zon expressed his sincere thanks for the title bestowed on him by the Palace.
Meanwhile, a polemic has emerged among those associated with the Royal Palace of Singaraja who do not agree with the tile of nobility given to the Jakarta lawmaker. The head of the Puri Singaraja Association, A.A. Wiranata Kusuma, has said he greatly regrets the granting of the noble title that he characterizes as a private business matter between Ngurah Ugrasen and Fadli Zon.
“We are now very different and no longer live in the time of royalty, but now live in a Republic. We can no hold to the belief that we are blue bloods descended from a King. We are concerned regarding the unrest created yesterday (with the granting of the noble title) and I personally ask forgiveness on what took place at the Buleleng Palace. We will soon hold a meeting among all the descendent of the Buleleng Palace to discuss this incident. I did not attend the ceremony where the noble title was bestowed, because a ceremony was being held at the Panji Tisna Temple. If I knew a noble title was being granted I would have probably spoken up,” said A.A. Wiranata Kusuma.
As a descendent of the Royal Household of Puri Buleleng, A.A. Wiranata Kusuma does not agree with granting the title of Yang Muia Sri Paduka Raja that was given to the Deputy-speaker of the DPR-RI, Fadli Zon.