The Story Of General Hoegeng And His Favorite Orangutan
General Hoegeng Imam Santoso (Wikimedia Commons)

General Hoegeng Imam Santoso was born into a family that loves animals. His father likes to keep cats and birds. That love decreased to Hoegeng. The pets are abundant. Orangutans are one of them. Indonesian primates are the most loved by Hoegeng. Every day he likes to hang out with her. The honest policeman even made special clothes for orangutans with the words: Monkeys (Golmon). That said, to satirize the behavior of the ruling party.

For Hoegeng, family is everything. Family is Hoegeng's place to learn many things. Including being an animal lover. Hoegeng often gets valuable life lessons from his father who loves animals.

Every day Hoegeng enjoys watching his father mingling with pets in the yard of the house. Birds are his favorite pets. Because, the yard of Hoegeng's house is almost full of cages and bird cages. The types of birds that his father looks after also vary: from swamp cucak, canaries, turtles, sriguntings, finches and others.

All pets are well cared for. His father's kindness is limitless. After all, his father was able to raise a fantastic number of cats. No less than 45 cats are kept by his father. The presence of these pets makes Hoegeng's house never lonely. The atmosphere is always pleasant.

Unknowingly the love for animals is contagious to Hoegeng. He likes the atmosphere of the house which is dominated by animal sounds. People close to him also said that Hoegeng's house is like a zoo. All because of the varied collection of pets. The collection of pets has been collected by Hoegeng dai when he was the Head of the Immigration Service, the Minister, the National Police Chief, until his retirement.

“What I will also tell you is that my father's hobby of raising animals and birds passed down to me. At my house in Jakarta, I seem to have my own zoo and bird park. Some of it I even get from friends who understand this hobby of mine. I was once awarded by Admiral (AL) Soedomo and Hamzah two orangutans, for example.”

“There is a natural pleasure and peace of hearing the sounds of birds and animals at any time like in a forest. Of course, what I maintain is only to the extent permitted by the law and humanity. Certain animals today are so rare that they need to be re-breeded and some should be returned to the wild,” said Hoegeng as written by Abrar Yusra and Ramadhan KH in the book Hoegeng: Police Dreams and Reality (1993).

Hoegeng's Pet

The Smiling General's large collection of animals. From birds to crocodiles. According to Hoegeng, the most special animal is the orangutan. The collection is not just one, but five. The orangutan was given by a number of people. One of them is the Commander of the Order for the Restoration and Security (Pangkopkamtib) Admiral Soedomo.

According to the tradition he built, every pet given to Hoegeng is always given the name of the giver. He named one of his orangutans Soedomo. To reward those who give, he said. Giving the name sometimes often makes Hoegeng's colleagues - who come to his house - laugh out loud.

The problem of caring for Hoegeng's pets is painstaking. In the midst of his busy life as a state official, he can spend time with his favorite animal. In fact, Hoegeng raises his orangutans like raising his own children. aka full of love. That love makes Hoegeng always comfortable at home.

Once he didn't see the orangutan, Hoegeng was sad. The story was told by Hoegeng to his secretary when he was Secretary of the Presedium of the Cabinet in the Dwikora II cabinet, Soedharto Martopoespito. The story was told by Hoegeng before finally all the orangutans were returned to the wild and donated to the zoo.

One day Hoegeng told me that his pet orangutan had escaped into a neighbor's yard. The housekeeper panicked. The orangutan was chased by him. Instead of being able to catch it, the orangutan chose to flee to the top of the neighbor's roof.

Hoegeng had no other choice but to intervene to chase his favorite orangutan. He went to a neighbor's house. Permission was also obtained to immediately go up to the roof tile. The orangutan's name was called many times. However, many times the orangutans did not respond.

In fact, his orangutans are getting farther away. Another attempt was made, but the result was the same. But not Hoegeng if you give up easily. He didn't want to be frustrated. He tried to rack his brain and bersiaat. Imitating the monkey's style and sound is his magic. In fact the strategy worked. The orangutan immediately returned to Hoegeng's arms.

“Hoegeng pretended to be a monkey by imitating the monkey's style and voice, Mas Dharto. Maybe because he was thought to be his 'brother', the orangutan suddenly wanted to. He came closer and asked for a hug. Hoegeng immediately hugged and brought him down," said Hoegeng to Soedharto Martopoespito as Suhartono wrote in the book Hoegeng: Police and Exemplary Ministers (2013).


Hoegeng's love for his favorite orangutan is getting more intimate every year. The orangutan often hugs and spoils Hoegeng. Even Hoegeng came up with the idea of making a special dress for his favorite orangutan, in order to welcome the 1971 general election. Hoegeng then wrote that the shirt was Golmon (Monkey Group).

It is said that Golmon's writing is to satirize the behavior of the ruling party. This satire may have been made considering that Hoegeng often satirized the New Order (Orba) and its leader, Suharto. Especially after Suharto wanted to use Pancasila as a tool to silence his political opponents. After that, Hoegeng then joined groups that actively criticized the New Order, such as the Institute for Constitutional Awareness (LKB) and the Petition 50 group.

“(Orangutan) The one Mr. Domo gave him, he named Soedomo and the other one was named Sri Utaningsih. The five orangutans have been affectionate for years, often hugging and spoiling Hoegeng. During the election he made clothes with the inscription Golmon (Monkey Group). By Hoegeng the orangutan was released, but then the police chased him until he entered the gedongan house,” said Aris Santoso et al in the book Hoegeng: A Cooling Oasis in the Middle of Corrupt Behavior of National Leaders (2009).

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