6 Aceh Heroes Enshrined in Jakarta

Heroes from Aceh – DKI Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan changed the name of Jalan Inspection Kalimalang on the north side to Jalan Laksamana Malahayati, namely a national hero from Aceh. Anies said that Admiral Malahayati’s role in dealing with the invaders needed to be appreciated and dedicated.

The change in the name of the road is based on Governor Decree No. 1242 of 2021 concerning the Determination of the Name of Jalan Laksamana Malahayati replacing the Name of Jalan Inspection Kalimalang on the North Side.

Besides Admiral Malahayati, there are many heroes from Aceh whose names are immortalized as street names and place names in DKI Jakarta. Here are the names of these heroes and their short biographies:

1. Cut Meutia

Tjoet Nyak Meutia was born on February 15, 1870 and died on October 24, 1910. He was an Indonesian national hero who came from the Aceh region. He was buried in Alue Kurieng, Aceh. Cut Meutia was declared a national hero of Indonesia based on Presidential Decree Number 107/1964 in 1964.

Cut Nyak Meutia or Cut Meutia is the son of Teuku Ben Daud Pirak and Cut Jah. In their marriage, they were blessed with 5 children. Cut Meutia is the only daughter in the family. The oldest brother is named Cut Beurahim, then followed by Teuku Muhammadsyah, Teuku Cut Hasen and Teuku Muhammad Ali. Cut Nyak Meutia’s parents are native Acehnese, a Uleebalang in the village of Pirak which is in the Keuleebalangan Keureutoe area.

At first, Cut Meutia fought against the Dutch together with her husband, Teuku Muhammad or Teuku Cik Tunong. However, in March 1905, Cik Tunong was arrested by the Dutch and executed on the Lhokseumawe beach. Before he died, Teuku Cik Tunong gave a message to his best friend Pang Nanggroe to be willing to marry his wife and take care of his son, Teuku Raja Sabi.

Cut Meutia then married Pang Nanggroe carrying out her husband’s will and joined other troops under the leadership of Teuku Muda Gantoe. In a battle with the Marechausée Corps in Paya Cicem, Cut Meutia and the women fled into the forest. Meanwhile, Pang Nagroe continued to fight until he died on September 26, 1910.

Cut Meutia then got up and continued to fight along with the rest of his troops. He attacked and seized colonial posts while moving towards Gayo through the wilderness. However, on October 24, 1910, Cut Meutia and his troops clashed with Marechausée in Alue Kurieng and in that battle Cut Nyak Meutia died.

On December 19, 2016, the Government of the Republic of Indonesia, enshrined Cut Nyak Meutia in the Republic of Indonesia’s new rupiah banknotes with a nominal value of IDR 1,000.

In DKI Jakarta, the name Cut Meutia is immortalized as the name of the street and the name of the mosque located in the Central Jakarta area.

2. Cut Nyak Dien

Cut Nyak Dhien was born in Lampadang, Kingdom of Aceh, in 1848 and died in Sumedang, West Java on November 6, 1908; he was buried in Mount Quail, Sumedang. Cut Nyak Dhien is an Indonesian National Hero who comes from Aceh and fought against the Dutch during the Aceh War.

After the VI Mukim region was attacked, she fled, while her husband Ibrahim Lamnga continued the battle against the Dutch. The death of Ibrahim Lamnga at Gle Tarum on June 29, 1878, finally brought Cut Nyak Dhien further in his resistance against the Dutch.

In 1880, Cut Nyak Dhien married Teuku Umar, after he had previously been promised to be able to go down on the battlefield if he accepted the proposal. From this marriage, Cut Nyak Dhien was blessed with a child named Cut Gambang. After his marriage to Teuku Umar, Cut Nyak Dhien and Teuku Umar fought together against the Dutch. However, on February 11, 1899 Teuku Umar died.

Cut Nyak Dhien was eventually arrested and taken to Banda Aceh. There, he was treated and his illness began to improve. The existence of Cut Nyak Dhien, who was considered by the Dutch to still have a strong influence on the resistance of the Acehnese people and his relationship with the Acehnese warriors who had not been caught, made him then be exiled to the Sumedang area. Cut Nyak Dhien finally died on November 6, 1908 and was buried in the Mount Quail area, Sumedang. The current name of Cut Nyak Dhien is enshrined as Cut Nyak Dhien Nagan Raya Airport in Meulaboh.

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In DKI Jakarta, the name Cut Nyak Dhien is immortalized as the name of the street and the name of the mosque in the Central Jakarta area.

3. Teuku Umar

Teuku Umar is a hero of Indonesian independence from Meulaboh, West Aceh District. He struggled to defend Aceh from the Dutch by using the strategy of pretending to cooperate with the Dutch, so that he was given full trust to lead troops with weapons. When the weapons had been collected, he immediately turned around and attacked the Dutch.

Positions held by Teuku Umar include:

  1. In 1878, Teuku Umar had served as Keuchik of Gampong Darat (now Johan Pahlawan District) and became Commander of the People’s Defense when the Dutch attacked Meulaboh
  2. In 1887, together with Teuku Tjik Abdurahman, the crown prince of Teuku Tjik Ali, uleebalang Meulaboh.
  3. In 1889, he was appointed by the Sultan of Aceh as Admiral/Amirul Bahar or Panglima Laot in western Aceh. He was always active in assisting the finances of the Sultan, Teungku Tjik Ditiro, and Panglima Polem through regular cash transfers.

Teuku Umar made peace with the Dutch in 1883. However, one year later war broke out again between the two. 9 years later, in 1893, Teuku Umar began to find a way to beat the Dutch from ‘within’. He then pretended to be a Dutch henchman. This action made Cut Nyak Dien furious because he felt embarrassed and confused.

For his services in subduing several defense posts in Aceh, Teuku Umar won the trust of the Dutch. He was then given the title Johan Pahlawan and given the freedom to form his own army with a total of 250 soldiers and facilitated by complete weapons from the Netherlands. The Dutch did not know that this was only the strategy of Teuku Umar, who had collaborated with Acehnese warriors before. Not long after, Teuku Umar was given an additional 120 soldiers and 17 commanders including Pangleot as his assistant and right hand man.

March 30, 1896, Teuku Umar finally left the Dutch military service. It was here that he then launched an attack based on the tactics and strategy of war that he had. Together with troops equipped with 800 guns, 25,000 bullets, 500 kg of ammunition and 18 thousand dollars in cash, Teuku Umar together with Teuku Panglima Polem Muhammad Daud and 400 of his followers slaughtered the Dutch. It was recorded that 25 people died and 190 were injured from the Dutch.

Governor Deykerhof, who at that time replaced Governor Ban Teijn, had trusted Teuku Umar all this time, feeling hurt and angry because he had been betrayed by Teuku Umar. Deykerhof then ordered Van Heutsz and his large army to arrest Teuku Umar. A sudden attack was launched on the Meulaboh area and it was this attack that took Teuku Umar’s life. He was shot and died on the battlefield, precisely in Kampung Mugo, on February 10, 1899.

The name Teuku Umar is immortalized as the name of a street in an elite area in Central Jakarta.

4. Polem Commander

Panglima Polem or who has the full name Teuku Panglima Polem Sri Muda Perkasa Muhammad Daud is an Acehnese commander. Until now, clear information has not been found regarding the date and year of Panglima Polem’s birth, what is clear is that he is from the descendants of the Acehnese nobility. His father, Panglima Polem VIII Raja Kuala, was the son of Teuku Panglima Polem Sri Imam Muda Mahmud Arifin who was also known as Cut Banta (Panglima Polem VII (1845-1879). Mahmud Arifin was Commander of Sagoe XXII Mukim Aceh Besar.

In 1893, Panglima Polem joined Teuku Umar with the aim of fighting Dutch colonialism. Previously, Teuku Umar carried out a strategy by pretending to surrender and then attacking the Dutch again together with Panglima Polem. In 1897 in the Seulimeum ​​area, Panglima Polem together with his troops fought against the Dutch. In that battle, the Dutch managed to conquer three fortifications that were previously built by Panglima Polem along with his troops.

The defense made in the Gayo area succeeded in frustrating the Dutch because they always failed to master it. Then, the Dutch carried out a cunning strategy by trying to kidnap the family of King Daud Syah from Aceh. The Dutch finally succeeded in kidnapping the sultan’s wife named Teungku Putroe in the Glumpang Payong area. Besides that, the Dutch also arrested another sultan’s wife named Pocut cot Murong and the Sultan’s son in Lam Meulo. The Dutch then forced Sultan Daud Syah to surrender and sign a peace treaty with the Dutch.

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Apart from that, the Dutch also threw threats that if Sultan Daud Syah did not immediately surrender, then his family who had been arrested would be thrown into exile. Because of this threat, in January 1903, Sultan Daud Syah was forced to make peace with the Dutch. The Dutch then exiled Sultan Daud Syah to Ambon and to Batavia until he died in 1939.

The arrest of Sultan Daud Syah apparently influenced the Polem Commander who was still fighting in Aceh. Until finally Panglima Polem was forced to surrender and make peace with the Dutch in 1903. Panglima Polem was then detained until he died in 1939.

The name Panglima Polem is immortalized as one of the roads in the Blok M area, South Jakarta.

5. Teuku Cik Di Tiro

Teuku Chik Di Tiro is a scholar and national hero from the Pidie area, Aceh. He is very famous for inflaming the spirit of Sabil war in the Acehnese people to continue to fight against Dutch colonialism.

Quoted from the official website of the Aceh Provincial Government, Teuku Chik Di Tiro’s Sabil War movement managed to frustrate the Dutch in the period 1881-1890. Teuku Chik Di Tiro finally died on January 25, 1891 and was allegedly poisoned by the enemy.

The name Teuku Chik Di Tiro is immortalized as the name of a street in the Menteng area, Central Jakarta.

6. Admiral Malahayati

Keumalahayati, born on January 1, 1550 and died on June 30, 1615 was a warrior from the Aceh Sultanate. His father was Admiral Mahmud Syah. His grandfather from his father’s line was Admiral Muhammad Said Syah, son of Sultan Salahuddin Syah who became leader in 1530–1539 AD. Sultan Salahuddin Syah was the son of Sultan Ibrahim Ali Mughayat Syah (1513–1530 AD), who became the founder of the Kingdom of Aceh Darussalam.

In 1585–1604, he served as Head of the Secret Commander’s Palace Guards and Commander of Government Protocol from Sultan Saidil Mukammil Alauddin Riayat Syah IV.

Malahayati’s struggle to fight the invaders began after the battle in Teluk Haru. The Aceh Sultanate’s naval fleet against the Portuguese fleet. In that battle, Admiral Zainal Abidin, the husband of Malahayati, died. After being abandoned by her husband, Malahayati made a suggestion to the Sultan of Aceh to form an army consisting of the widows of Acehnese soldiers who had died in war. The request was granted and Malahayati was appointed as the leader of the Inong Balee troop with the rank of admiral. Malahayati is the first Acehnese woman to receive this rank.

Admiral Malahayati was not only proficient on the battlefield. He was also good at conducting peace negotiations on behalf of the Sultan of Aceh with the Dutch. The negotiations were an attempt by the Dutch to free Frederick de Houtman who had been arrested by Admiral Malahayati. The peace is realized. Frederick de Houtman was free, but the Dutch were obliged to pay compensation to the Sultanate of Aceh. Admiral Malahayati was also the person who received James Lancaster, namely the envoy from Queen Elizabeth I of England.

Admiral Malahayati died in 1615. His grave is in Lamreh Village, Krueng Raya District, Aceh Besar District. Admiral Malahayati earned the title of National Hero on November 9 2017.

Now the name Laksamana Malayati has officially replaced the Kalimalang Inspection Road on the north side in Pondok Kelapa Village, Duren Sawit Village, Pondok Bambu Village, Duren Sawit District and Cipinang Muara Village, Cipinang Besar Selatan Village, Jatinegara District, East Jakarta.

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