West Papua Diary

The History of Sekar Kingdom: The Islamic Kingdom in Papua

Sekar Kingdom

When talking about kingdoms in the archipelago of Nusantara, people often forget about the kingdom in the land of Papua. At the same time, Papua had several kingdoms at that time. Some of these kingdoms even still exist today. For example, the Sekar Kingdom is located in Fakfak, West Papua.

To be precise, the kingdom of Sekar is located in Berau Bay, Fakfak Regency, West Papua Province. The center of government of Sekar Kingdom is in Kokas District. This kingdom still exists in Papua, along with 8 other kingdoms. That is Ati-Ati, Patipi, Rumbati, Fatagar, Arguni, Wertuar, Namatota, and Komisi.

Here is the history of the Sekar Kingdom that you need to know!

The Origin of Sekar Kingdom

Basically, the kingdom of Sekar is a part of the Islamic Empires in Papua. Like other kingdoms in the Onin Peninsula, Sekar also received influence from the Bacan Sultanate. Therefore, it is not surprising that most of its people embrace Islam.

In the beginning, the kingdom of Sekar was a part of the Rumbati Kingdom and Wertuar. However, as time went by, people started to acknowledge Sekar as their own kingdom. The first king of Sekar is called Pandai Congan. People also know him as King Kabituwar.

The reason is that the kingdom was located at the entrance to Sekar Bay, which is called Kabituwar. Then, in 1896, the Sultan of Tidore was appointed Mner from “Soa” Beraweri to become the king kapitan of Sekar. It is based on suggestions from the king of Misool and Rumbati.

Later, Mner moved to Sekar Bay, the center of the royal government. After that, Mner started to build the Sekar Village. The son of Mner, Kubis, also has title as the king kapitan of Sekar. However, their later descendants did not have this title anymore.

The Successor Crisis of Sekar Kingdom

As a king of Kabituwar, Pandai Congan had no successors when he died. It is because he has no brothers. Then, his son Abdulrachman is still too young. Because of that, Sekar was led by Rajamuda Wertuwar named Lakate. He is the stepson of Pandai.

When Lakate performed his function as a king of Kabituwar, the function of Rajamuda, or young king, was carried out by Saban Pipi Rumagesan. In lineage, Pipi is not a descendant of the king. He is the son of Dimin, who should not become a king by custom because he does not have a royal bloodline.

However, no one else is better suited to lead Sekar than Pipi. So, with Dutch intervention, they made Pipi king in 1911 with the title Sekar King. Then, in 1915, the position was replaced by his own son, Machmud Singgirei Rumagesan, the first national hero from Papua.

The First Queen in the Land of Papua

In 2009, Rustuty Rumagesan rose to the highest throne of the kingdom of Sekar as a queen. This happened because of the insistence of Sekar residents, who wanted him as a leader. It made Rustuty the first queen to serve as a leader in Papua.

During her reign, the nephew of Rustuty accompanied her as the king of Sekar. She managed to be a queen for 10 years until 2019. Rustuty carries out her role as queen well. She brought many advances to society, especially in cultural and economic matters. That is why the people of Sekar love her.

For now, the king of Sekar Kingdom is Arief Rumagesan. He served as king from 2019 until now. Despite his position as a cultural entity, he is treated like a general king. However, the portion is different from before the independence of the Republic of Indonesia.

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