Banten’s Ratu Atut Dynasty Seeks to Consolidate Power
Denying claims they are perpetuating a political dynasty, members of Banten’s first family have rushed to put their names on ballots for every level of elected office in 2014.
Banten Governor Ratu Atut Chosiyah’s first- and second-born children, Andika Hazrumy and Andiara Aprillia Hikmat, have listed as legislative candidates, as has Atut’s daughter-in-law, Ade Rossi Chaerunnisa.
Atut, aged 50, is now in her third term in power in Banten; the first was as deputy governor, followed by two terms as governor, making her the country’s first woman elected to that position.
Her son Andika, is hoping to represent the Serang and Cilegon electorate in the national House of Representatives, running under the Golkar Party banner. Her daughter Andiara has been placed on the ballot in the hopes of taking over from her elder brother when he vacates his current seat representing Banten in the Regional Representatives Council (DPD) in Jakarta.
Meanwhile, Atut’s daughter-in-law, who is currently deputy head of the legislative council representing Serang, the capital of Banten province, has moved to swap to become a candidate for membership of the provincial representative council, also with Golkar Party.
Atut’s husband, Hikmat Tomet, currently a Golkar House of Representatives lawmaker, has put his name on the ballot for re-election to represent Banten districts of Pandeglang and Lebak.
Finally, Ratu Tatu Chasanah, Atut’s younger sister, is the deputy district chief of Serang, and their step-brother, Nurjaman, is the deputy mayor of the city of Serang, the capital of both the district and the province.
But the family says it has no dynastic ambitions, and that they all have individual ambitions to represent their respective electorates. “My candidature is based purely on my own sincere wish to serve the community of Banten,” said 26-year-old Andiara after registering for the ballot on Monday.
She added that she wished to change the current balance of representatives, the majority of whom are men of advancing years.
Not to be outdone, other Banten political families have followed suit: children of Lebak district head Mulyadi Jayabaya and Tangerang Mayor Wahidin Halim have registered to contest elections at the national, provincial and district levels.