Wikana, vice-minister van Jeugdzaken in het kabinet Sjahrir III, Bestanddeelnr 11879.jpg

Wikana (born 16 October 1914) was an Indonesian minister and independence leader. He was one of the youths who forced Sukarno and Hatta to declare independence immediately after the surrender of the Japanese. He was the first Indonesian Minister of Youth and Sport (although in his era the office was called Minister of State of Youth Affairs). He was a member of the Indonesian Communist Party. Sometime after the coup d'état attempt, he was arrested and went missing.


Early lifeEdit

Wikana was born on 16 October 1914 in Sumedang. He was the fourteenth child of sixteen. His father was Raden Haji Soelaiman, immigrant from Demak, and his mother was Nonoh.[1] Wikana was son of menak family in Sumedang. His brother was Winanta, an exile to Digul, according to Soemarsono, one of youth leaders generation '45. According to Ben Anderson, Wikana attended to Dutch-speaking Europeesch Lagere School (ELS) and continued his study to Meer Uitgebreid Lager Onderwijs (MULO). After graduating from MULO, Wikana became contributor in Bandung weekly Fikiran Rakjat according to an article of Merdeka dated 15 May 1947.[1][2]

According to Trikoyo Ramidjo, Wikana was a member of the Communist Party of Indonesia since the 1930s. Wikana also was a member of the Bandung branch of Partai Indonesia (Partindo). In 1935, Wikana went to Surabaya to lead Masjarakat Baroe weekly. In 1938 he went to Jakarta leading Kebangoenan daily. In the same year, he was elected Penulis Umum II of Gerakan Rakyat Indonesia (Gerindo; Indonesian People Movement) and chairman of its youth section, Barisan Pemuda Gerindo (Gerindo Youth Wing).[1][2] In October 1938, Wikana, Amir Sjarifuddin, Asmara Hadi, dan A.M. Sipahutar became the editorial boards of political monthly magazine Toedjoean Rakjat.[1]

According to Harry A. Poeze, in the first volume of Tan Malaka, Gerakan Kiri, dan Revolusi Indonesia, Wikana contributed to Menara Merah (Red Tower), Moscow-influenced newspaper.[1] Wikana was responsible for the paper circulation in West Java.[3] In June 1940, he together with Adam Malik and Amir Sjarifuddin was suspected by colonial government after a copy of Menara Merah discovered. According to Ben Anderson, along with Adam Malik and Pandu Kartawiguna, he was charged with distributing the newspaper and arrested. After the Dutch colonial government surrendered to Japanese imperial army, Wikana was released from Cilacap prison.[1][4]

Around September or October 1944, Wikana offered Sjahrir to be a lecturer at the Asrama Indonesia Merdeka, a school for Indonesian young men above high school but for non-high school graduates from high school. The school was supported and supervised by Japanese, Yoshizumi Tomegoro and Nishijima Shigetada and opened in December 1944 in Jakarta. Beside Wikana and Sjahrir, the teachers were Sukarno, Hatta, Subardjo, Iwa Kusumantri, Soediro and Sjahrir.[5][6][7]

Proclamation of independenceEdit

On 14 August 1945, some young men held a meeting in the Bacteriological Laboratory in Pegangsaan after the news of Japanese army surrendering spread. The result was Wikana with some other young men being sent to convince Sukarno to proclaim independence.[8] They left the lab and were on their way to Kaigun office, then they met Achmad Soebardjo, Iwa Kusumantri, Buntaran, and Samsi. After some talks, the young men proceeded to Pegangsaan Timur 56, placed where Sukarno lived.[9] After they debated Sukarno, Wikana said to Sukarno, "If Bung Karno will not declare this proclamation, tomorrow there will be murder and bloodshed." Sukarno answered, "Here is my throat! Drag me into a corner, finish me off tonight! Don't wait till tomorrow."[10] According to Sukarno in his autobiography Bung Karno Penyambung Lidah Rakyat, he refused Wikana because he felt that they were not ready if they had to fight against the Japanese army physically. However, according to Poeze, Sukarno refused because there would be a PPKI meeting in Jakarta and Sukarno didn't want to leave the meeting.[11]

The debate heated after Mohammad Hatta joined, invited by Soebardjo. Hatta said that the surrender news was not official yet. He didn't want the declaration to lead to chaos. Wikana then said that the young men had enough power to fight back Japanese physically. Hatta answered if the young men wanted to declare independence immediately they should declare that themselves. Wikana replied that he and young men did not want to be responsible for any consequences if the declaration were not made immediately.[12]

One day after the proclamation, Wikana, Chairul Saleh, and Sukarni attended a meeting held by PPKI.[13] On 27 August 1945, Wikana was elected a member of the Indonesian National Party (PNI). Wikana was a member of Angkatan Pemuda Indonesia (API; Indonesian Young Generation), later becoming the chairman. He together with Soemarsono went to Yogyakarta to attend the First Youth Congress on 10 November 1945. The result was seven of twenty nine organizations merging into one, Pemuda Sosialis Indonesia (Pesindo; Socialist Youth of Indonesia). On 11 November, Wikana elected vice chairman of the organization.[14]

Wikana was the State Minister of Youth Affairs during two cabinets led by Sjahrir cabinet and two cabinets led by Amir Sjarifuddin cabinet.[2][14] One week before the first appointment, though, on behalf of the Persatuan Perjuangan, Wikana stated that he didn't want to be in the cabinet.[15] Under Amir Sjarifuddin, Wikana served from July 1947 to January 1948.[16] He lived in Yogyakarta as the minister because during the struggle of the independence Indonesia's capital moved to the city.[2][14]

In early 1948, Hatta replaced Amir Sjarifuddin as prime minister. Wikana was appointed by Hatta as Military Governor of Surakarta. After the 1948 Madiun rebellion, Hatta replaced Wikana with Colonel Gatot Subroto.[14] On 1 September 1948, Wikana began to serve as the secretary of the youth section of the politbureau.[16][17] After the Pesindo conference on 4–12 November 1950, he was no longer elected as the executive member. Later, on 29 December, he resigned from a study group run by the Murba Party.[18] Wikana was remained a member of the Central Committee of the PKI until 7 January 1951 when the new leaders of the party were announced.[19] In 1953, he was appointed a member of the Constitutional Assembly (Konstituante).[2][14] In the 1955 Indonesian Constituent Assembly election 1955 general election, Wikana and Alimin represented the PKI for Constituent Assembly. Later, in December 1956, Wikana was appointed as secretary of the party fraction in the assembly.[20] After the sixth congress of the party in September 1959, Wikana was reelected as full member of central committee.[21][22]

In 1963 he was a member of DPA. In 1965, he was invited by Chairul Saleh to be a member of the People's Consultative Assembly (MPRS). However he had no power in party nor government.[2][14]

After PKI movement and arrestEdit

Sometime before 1965 coup attempt, Wikana and other PKI delegates went to Beijing, China, to celebrate the national day of China. After the news of the coup attempt spread, Wikana ordered other delegates to stay in Beijing. However, he returned to Indonesia.[2] Wikana arrived in Jakarta on 10 October 1965. According to Chairul Saleh in AM Hanafi Menggugat, when Wikana arrived at Kemayoran Airpoty, he was immediately arrested by the military. According to Wikana's third child, he was detained in Kramat. After being questioned for two nights, Wikana was released. On 9 June 1966, Wikana he was arrested by around ten unidentified armed men in his house. After the event, he went missing.[23]


Wikana's works are about movements and communism. He wrote Organisatie, Pengoempoelan Boeah Pena (Oesaha Penerbitan Tengara, 1947), Dokumentasi Pemuda Sekitar Proklamasi Indonesia Merdeka (co-write with DN Aidit and Legiono, published by Badan Penerangan Pusat SBPI, 1948), and Satu Dua Pandangan Marxisme (Revolusioner, 194x).[1]

Personal lifeEdit

Wikana married Asminah binti Oesman in Kemayoran, 1940. They had six children: Lenina Soewarti Wiasti Wikana Putri, Temo Zein Karmawan Soekana Pria, Tati Sawitri Apramata, Kania Kingkin Pratapa, Rani Sadakarana, and Remondi Sitakodana. [1] According to his third child, Wikana was able to speak English, German, French and Russian.[2]

See alsoEdit



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Isnaeni, Hendri F. (19 August 2010). "MENCARI WIKANA (2) Anak Menak Revolusioner". Historia. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Triyana, Bonnie (19 August 2010). "MENCARI WIKANA (1) Sepakterjang Pemuda dari Sumedang". Historia. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  3. ^ Poeze 2008, p. 151.
  4. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 47.
  5. ^ Mrázek 1994, p. 248.
  6. ^ Lebra 2010, p. 95.
  7. ^ Kahin 1952, pp. 115-116.
  8. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 70.
  9. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 71.
  10. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 72.
  11. ^ Akbar, Jay (19 August 2010). "MENCARI WIKANA (3) Lakon dalam Pusaran Revolusi". Historia. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  12. ^ Anderson 2006, p. 72-73.
  13. ^ Poeze 2008, p. 45.
  14. ^ a b c d e f Mukhti, MF. (19 August 2010). "MENCARI WIKANA (4) Saujana Merdeka Menteri Sederhana". Historia. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  15. ^ Poeze 2008, p. 306.
  16. ^ a b Hindley 1966, p. 23.
  17. ^ Kahin 1952, p. 276.
  18. ^ Hindley 1966, p. 24.
  19. ^ Hindley 1966, p. 63.
  20. ^ Hindley 1966, p. 66.
  21. ^ Hindley 1966, p. 67.
  22. ^ Hindley 1966, p. 104.
  23. ^ Isnaeni, Hendri F. (19 August 2010). "MENCARI WIKANA (6) Berpisah di Jalan Dempo". Historia. Retrieved 1 March 2015.


  • Anderson, Benedict (2006). Java in a Time of Revolution: Occupation and Resistance, 1944-1946. Jakarta: Equinox Publishing. ISBN 9789793780146.
  • Hindley, Donald (1966). The Communist Party of Indonesia: 1951-1963. University of California Press.
  • Kahin, George McT. (1952). Nationalism and Revolution in Indonesia (reprint ed.). SEAP Publications. ISBN 9780877277347.
  • Lebra, Joyce C. (2010). Japanese-trained Armies in Southeast Asia (reprint ed.). Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies Publishing. ISBN 9789814279444.
  • Mrázek, Rudolf (1994). Sjahrir : politics and exile in Indonesia. Ithaca, N.Y.: Southeast Asia Program, Cornell University. ISBN 9780877277132.
  • Poeze, Harry A. (2008). Tan Malaka, gerakan kiri, dan revolusi Indonesia: Agustus 1945-Maret 1946. 1. Yayasan Obor Indonesia. ISBN 9789794616970.