President Jokowi has officially assigned Keumalahayati as a National Hero. The awarding took place at the State Palace on November 9, 2017. Keumalahayati is known as the first female Admiral in the World. Also in a battle in the Aceh Sea he is believed to have succeeded in killing the first Dutch explorer to the archipelago namely Cornelis de Houtman and captivating his younger brother Federic de Houtman. How did the event occur? Perhaps this is interesting to retell.

In 1592 AD Cornelis de Houtman was sent to Lisbon (Portugal) by a Amsterdam merchant to find out information about spice islands located in the far east. After returning home from Lisboa De Houtman ensure that Banten is the most appropriate area to buy spices. On June 27, 1596 AD de Houtman expedition arrived in Banten with 249 crew members, they were welcomed by the king of Banten and the natives there. But after some rough characters shown the Dutch sailors of Banten’s sultan with the Portuguese drove them away. Then they continue their journey to Madura to engage a battle with a prince there. They left only 87 people who made it back to Amsterdam. In the following years there have been many Dutch ships sailing to the archipelago, they are increasingly brave to navigate the Ocean in Asia because it has gained a lot. The bravery of Ferederick’s two brothers and Cornelis De Houtman holding commercial affairs, has gained experiences that have led to his expansion. The Dutch wanted to establish their office in Aceh because they knew that Aceh was a kingdom that controlled trade in the archipelago and was hostile to the Portuguese in Malacca. The bonds of Dutch merchants have agreed to establish good relations with Aceh, they offer arms or barter to be allowed to trade in Aceh.

On 23 March 1598 CE, departed from the Netherlands 2 de Leeuwen and de Leewin ships with 225 men headed by Cornelis De Houtman (brothers) to Aceh through the Cape of Good Hope, Madagascar (East Africa), along the Persian Gulf coast, Malabar Bay (South India) to Sailan and from there continue to sail the great ocean and finally on July 1, 1599 anchored in the port of Aceh. The Dutch who arrived at the Port of Aceh turned to Shah Bandar and gave all reports from De Houtman. Shah Bandar then bring de Houtman to the Sultan Al-Mukammil. The Sultan received the De Houtman brothers very well even the sultan ordered to cut the buffalo for a Dutch troop meal. The Sultan is pleased to grant permission to trade and buy Lada, in addition to the land they also provide goods in the Land. The incident was known by a Portuguese Sultan translator named Afonso Vicentia, he was unhappy to see the sultan allowing the Dutch to trade in Aceh so he incited the Acehnese merchant not to sell pepper to the Dutch. At that time the Portuguese who first came to the archipelago was not happy with the Dutch presence so often the battle between the two.

One day the Dutch crew wanted to buy bananas in the week sold by an Acehnese woman. They ask the price of bananas by pointing them with the feet. They did not know that it was so disrespectful to the Acehnese. So the Dutchman was slapped by the people of Aceh and there was a fight in the market which was then reconciled by Syahbandar Pekan. The Portuguese were pleased to see the incident, coupled with some intimidation for the Acehnese to hate the Dutch.

One day the Sultan called De Houtman to the Sultan to the palace. Sultan Ask de Houtman to lease his ship used to escort Aceh soldiers, cannons and other means of war to Johor in preparation for attacking Malacca. The request was well received by De Houtman by making a treaty. The agreement was discovered by the Portuguese who had just moved from Goa (India), an interpreter of the Sultan Affoso Vicente advised against canceling the agreement with the Dutch, Aceh was in a relationship with the Portuguese. Although influenced by Affoso Vicente (Portuguese ambassador) the Sultan remained at his establishment and his arrangements with the Dutch.

On September 11, 1599, Sultan Alaaddin Riajat Syah Al mukammil set the day for an expedition to Johor. The sultan commanded that the day a banquet be held for the departing officers and the crew of the Dutch ships to send food cooked for the Dutch ship. The order was obeyed by Syahbandar and the Sultan’s Secretary. Arriving on the ship was seen by Syahbandar and the Sultan’s Secretary, the Dutchmen on board were drunk and vomiting. They accuse the food of being poisoned and many of the ship’s children have fallen unconscious. It was astonishing that Syahbandar while the boats carrying the Acehnese soldiers to the ship thought they wanted to attack the Dutch. So the Dutch began to attack the Sultan’s Secretary until he was injured and a Commander of the brother of the Sultan was killed.

Hearing the news of the battle, Admiral Keumalahayati led his troops to attack the Dutch ship. On board there was a fierce battle that killed Cornelis de Houtman in the hands of Keumalahayati and about 95 other Dutchmen were killed. Several Dutchmen who survived were captured, including Federic de Houtman his brother Cornelis The Houtman. After the sultan analyzed the event by presenting several witnesses including the chef because there was a possibility that the food had put marijuana seeds in it so they were drunk. Not only that, the Sultan also summoned captive Dutch soldiers including Federik to give testimony. After examining all the sultans concluded that the incident was a disgruntled Portuguese act against the Dutch, so the Sultan fired his favorite Portuguese translator Affoso Vicente and since then the Sultan of Aceh no longer trust the Portuguese. Wallahualam. May be useful.

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