A Banjar Son’s Indonesierschap
BORN in Banjarmasin (now in South Kalimantan), Liem Koen Hian, an ethnic Chinese, would one day become an important figure in the pre-independence nationalist movement. Known to be clever and courageous, Liem lived a life of adventure as a young man. His political attitude was shaped when he was working as a journalist writing for a number of newspapers in Java and Sumatra. Although he once supported China, Liem later promoted Indonesia’s independence and fought for the future of the nation’s minority groups as a member of the Investigating Committee for Preparatory Work for Indonesia’s Independence (BPUPKI). His colorful life ended in misfortune. It is unknown where he is buried.
“Tua Pek Koen Hian was repeatedly arrested.”
“Because his writings were critical of the Dutch.”
LIEM Koen To would repeat the story numerous times to his four children whenever he spoke about his cousin, journalist Liem Koen Hian. If he had not sent news for some time or had not appeared at Liem Koen To’s home in Sawah Besar, Jakarta—at the time called Batavia—residents of...