Megawati receives 9th Honoris Causa doctorate

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Megawati receives her first Dr. H.C. from Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan, in September 2001. (Photo: Prive. Doc)

IO, Jakarta – Indonesia’s first president, Soekarno, now has another reason to be proud of his second child, Megawati Soekarnoputri. Other than having followed his footsteps as a capable politician – she is the General Chairwoman of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (“PDI-P”) as well as serving as Indonesia’s fifth President and the first female president in Indonesia – Megawati is also a scholar, like her father. She recently obtained her ninth honoris causa (HC) doctorate from the Soka University in Japan. 

Megawati closely studied Soekarno’s career path since the days he fought against oppressive colonial powers, until after Indonesia became independent and he its President. She closely recorded his leadership style from the time he set until the time he served in the highest office until the New Order deposed and put him under house arrest. The hard times after the “Old Order” were replaced by the “New Order”, strongly affected the Soekarno Family, including Megawati. She had to end her studies at Padjadjaran University’s Faculty of Agriculture, Bandung, in 1967 after only two years. When she changed courses in 1971 to study in University of Indonesia’s Faculty of Psychology in Jakarta, she was again forced to terminate her studies a mere year later. 

Megawati never formally completed her university courses, due to political reasons. Despite this setback, she earned Doctor Honoris Causa (Dr. H.C.) degrees from both national and foreign universities. In fact, the prestigious Japanese university in Hachioji, Soka University, awarded her the ninth of these degrees on Wednesday (08/01/2020). 

Chairman of PDIP’s Central Leadership Council (Dewan Pimpinan Pusat Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan – “DPP PDIP”) for Foreign Issues Ahmad Basarah stated that Megawati earned her Dr. H.C. in the Humanities. “Even though Ms. Megawati was unable to finish her studies in both Padjajaran Uni and University of Indonesia, it does not mean that she cannot achieve great things. She is the first female President in Indonesia, she successfully leads Indonesia’s biggest political party, and she has many other examples of her intellectual capacity and leadership skill,” he said. “Her success in her various fields of service demonstrates that she is a great self-learner who is able to absorb knowledge from many fields, by means of on-hand experiences. This is one of the reasons why many colleges decided to award her with Dr. H.C. degrees.” 

PDIP’s General Secretary Hasto Kristiyanto stated that Megawati’s 9th Dr. H.C. degree is evidence that she is recognized by both national and foreign academia. “They acknowledge Ms. Megawati Soekarnoputri’s intellectual capacity and achievements,” he said. 

Megawati received her first Dr. H.C. from Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan, in September 2001. It was for Law. Her second degree, for Politics, came from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO), Russia, in 22 April 2003. The third Dr. H.C. in Politics was granted by the Korea Maritime and Ocean University, Busan, South Korea, on 19 October 2015. 

On 25 May 2016, Megawati earned her Dr. H.C. in Politics and Government from Padjadjaran University, Bandung. On 27 September 2017, the State Universitas of Padang gave her a Dr. H.C. degree in Political Education. On 16 September 2017, the degree came from Mokpo National University, South Korea, for Economic Democracy. On 8 March 2018, the Institute of Public Administration (Institut Pemerintahan Dalam Negeri – “IPDN”) gave Megawati another Dr. H.C. in Politics and Government. Finally, on 5 November 2018, Fujian Normal University (FNU) in the PRC gave Megawati a Dr. H.C. degree in Economic Diplomacy. (dan)