17 June 2009
Manohara Odelia Pinot -- Part X -- Stirring the Pot
I am certain that I am giving more attention to this story than it deserves, but it is interesting to observe the lives of the rich and famous from a safe distance. I have also been wondering how I might work the case if I had been tapped to be one of the lawyers (from either side). The gossip that surrounds this case and the unusual nature of how it is playing out post abuse is also interesting. However, the interesting parts also travel back in time to a period when young Manohara was nothing more than a wanna be model and an avid social climber willing to do whatever it takes to be one of the beautiful people that us mere mortals view in magazines like Indonesian Tatler.
I am not going to focus on Manohara's early life (perhaps if I ever find anything out about that I can make a post on that too), but rather her emergence as the girlfriend of Anindra Ardiansyah Bakrie or Ardi as he is known to his friends (photo courtesy of here). This relationship has been acknowledged by all, supposedly, and evidence of it exists in the pages of some of Indonesia's glossier magazines. This relationship (or was it just a friendship?) was ongoing in 2008 and up to at least the time Manohara's mother gave her approval for Manohara to marry the Prince.
What is interesting to me is not that the girl is 16-years-old and dating, but rather her mother has approved her dating a man some 13 years her senior. By all definitions she is a child. We are not talking about a situation where the age difference is between a woman of 37 and a man of 50. For me, in that scenario, they are both adults and can make the decision if they so desire. This brings me to my point of avid social climbers willing to do anything to get their mugs in the glossy mags. I am also wondering what interested a successful son of a billionaire to start dating a child? In any event Ardi has moved on and is now dating the 18-year-old Nia Ramadhani.
What would be more interesting is to wonder whether or not the relationship was sexual as this would open up a whole new Pandora's Box of possibilities.
After the failure of her relationship with Ardi, Manohara moved on with her mother's blessing to marry Tengku Temenggong Mohammad Fakhry, the Prince of Kelantan State. It sounds all like a fairy tale to me; moving on from the son of a rich man to marry a prince. I am sure that someone out there would think this to be social climbing. Others might think she just got lucky, like a young Australian woman from Tasmania who met and married a prince who also happens to be the future King of Denmark.
The wedding snaps of Manohara's nuptials with the prince show a pretty happy looking young girl (or should I call her a woman?). Manohara seems to have been accepted into the royal family and was granted title. Seems to be the real fairy tale so far. However, what happens next is pretty much well-documented in all manner of places, including at http://toughlane.blogspot.com/ which is a blog titles Truth Appeared and seems to be Malaysian in origin (interesting read).
The filing of the complaints in the respective jurisdictions of the parties has been discussed in an earlier post. However, it would seem that both Manohara and her mother, Daisy Fajarina, could do jail time if they were to be found guilty or fined.
I have read that Daisy Fajarina is subject to an 18-month jail term in France. It would appear that luckily for her Indonesia and France do not have an extradition treaty. However, if the Indonesian government is serious in taking up Manohara's case then it goes without saying that it would then be under pressure to extradite Daisy, with or without an extradition treaty in place. Simply, if you are going to take a stand on one then you will have to take a stand on both.
The final point I want to make in terms of stirring the pot is this; it has taken no time at all for Manohara to re-enter the Jakarta social scene. It has also taken no time for Daisy to milk this alleged abuse for all it is worth. The question is this, "what should be read into this post-abuse behaviour, if anything?" I suppose we each deal with trauma in our own way, and I am guessing that this is taking the idea of "if you fall of the horse then the best option is to get straight back on".
However, there is a part of my brain saying that the best course of action for a 17-year-old who has been subject to rape, physical abuse, kidnapping, and who knows what else, is to take some time out of the spotlight and get some professional help in order to process the things that have allegedly happened to her. Because, if the allegations are true, then this has been no fairy tale.