Only 13 years old and already a killer . . .

Ahmad Dhani

Source: Photographer: Irwan Fauzi

Ahmad Dhani is a famous, popular musician in Indonesia, well-known for helping up-and-coming artists as well as for his own bands and successful hit songs.  Last week however his fame turned to infamy when his 13 year-old son, nicknamed  ‘Dul’, killed six people on a motorway.

Young ‘Dul’, having dropped off his “girlfriend” (she was lucky), was heading home with Noval, aged 14 in a Mitsubishi Lancer EX.  He lost control of it on a road heading into Jakarta, crossed the central reservation at high speed and ploughed into oncoming traffic. He hit a Daihatsu minivan which then hit a Toyota Avanza; six people died at the scene, nine others were seriously injured.

His best friend Noval was initially in a coma. ‘Dul’ himself has already undergone several operations on his shoulder, has a broken leg and several broken ribs but he is not dead – he is a lucky little boy. His father on the other hand, who has been interviewed by police, is a complete jerk. He stated that:

He had ‘spoilt” his sons by buying them a car each: a BMW for his eldest, 16-year old Al, a Jaguar for his second son, 14-year old El and for the youngest, Dul, a Mitsubishi Lancer EX BUT

They were not allowed to drive the cars by themselves because he had hired a driver for each of the cars i.e. they each had their own car, each with a personal driver.

SPOILT IS AN UNDERSTATEMENT given the outcome, but I see this sort of behavior all the time in Indonesia: wealthy parents who indulge their kids’ every whim with no thought of possible consequences. A couple of students at my school have admitted that they have been driving the family car since they were 14, with their parents full knowledge.

Dul Dhani

Abdul Qodir Jaelan aka ‘Dul’ Photo courtesy of

The legal driving age here is 18 but no-one takes that seriously and as for driving lessons, forget it, almost everyone pays the police for a fake driving license, mostly before they get their adult ID card.  Nearly every teacher in my staff room admitted that they got their license before their 17th birthday and paid a policeman for the fake. Their argument is that the official route “is too slow” but essentially corruption here is so endemic that Indonesians don’t even see it as corruption any more.But back to young Dul.  His father, of course, has visited all the bereaved families bearing monetary gifts and has apparently offered to pay for the education of all affected children until they are 18.  Who will  hold him to this commitment is a mystery since he is planning  to take his son to a hospital in Singapore for further treatment as soon as he is stable – a common ploy of the wealthy to avoid prosecution. The Indonesian Government has reacted to media and public outrage by promising to do a lot more checking of drivers’ ages – in cars as well as on motorbikes – and the Jakarta Governor has posited the possibility of a curfew for teenagers:

“We are now weighing the effects of a curfew, ” he said. “We have to determine the ages and education-level of the children who will be affected by the regulation and whether it will stop them from doing positive activities such as group studies at a friend’s house.”

Fixing the problem at source: i.e. driving tests and stopping fake licenses is not even on the table!  Apparently, people are happy for this to continue as they believe that the risk of a car accident is far less worrying than the dangers their precious little brats might face on public transport!  You gotta love this place!

Note. Source of quotes Jakarta Post

Categories: Just Plain Blog

2 replies

  1. What a tragic story! But the most upsetting thing here is the hypocrisy of governments around the world: they only act after something awful has happened, like in this case, and it’s too late for some. It’s the same thing in the USA with their right to bear arms and loads of innocent people die because of this. The whole thing make me sick.

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