Fake datu? Baron Geisler reportedly conferred by ‘false’ Sulu royals
MANILA, Philippines — Actor Baron Geisler allegedly received a “datu” conferment from “false pretenders who are not even recognized by the Philippine government” as claimants to the Sultanate of Sulu, said a statement issued by The Royal House of Sulu.
“Please be informed that the recent issuance of a title to Philippine actor, Mr. Baron Geisler, was done by false pretenders who are not even recognized by the Philippine government,” The Royal House of Sulu said in the statement’s caption.
“The Sultanate of Sulu and North Borneo urges the public not to be mislead…Mr. Geisler is NOT a Datu of Sulu,” the caption added.
In the statement dated September 11, The Royal House of Sulu’s Chancellery said His Royal Majesty Paduka Masahari Al-Maulana Ampun Sultan Hadji Muedzul-Lail Tan Kiram ibni Almarhum Sultan Mohammad Mahakuttah Abdulla Kiram, the 35th Sultan of Sulu and North Borneo, “wishes to inform the public that the recent issuance of a fake royal title to Philippine actor, Mr. Baron Geisler, is not from the legitimate Sultan of Sulu & North Borneo.”
According to the statement, Mohammadmamay Hasan Abdurajak and Maria Makiling Helen Fatima Nasaria Panolino Abdurajak are “commoners with no royal blood” and are “not even recognized by the Philippine government as one of the claimants to the Sultanate of Sulu.”
The statement also said that the 35th Sultan of Sulu and North Borneo’s coronation was the one recognized by the government through a Memorandum Order issued by the Philippine President on May 10, 1974.
The statement said that His Royal Majesty Paduka is also recognized by royalties from countries such as Portugal, Yugoslavia, Poland and Scotland.
‘Not in the name of our people’
In a message sent to Philstar.com, Amir Mawallil, Bangsamoro Transition Authority member, clarified that the family of the self-proclaimed King Raja Mohammadmamay Hasan Abdurajak and Queen Maria Makiling Helen Fatima Nasaria Panolino Abdurajak, who gave Baron the “datu” title, “do not speak in our name” or do not represent the Sultanate.
“First of all, it is my first time to hear the names of this King and Queen. At least to my knowledge and understanding of the Sulu Sultanate, there is no King Raja Mohammadmamay Hasan Abdujarak and no Queen Maria Makiling Helen Fatima Nasaria Panolino Abdujarak. Secondly, we do not call them kings or queens. We call them ‘sultans’ or ‘dayang-dayang,'” Mawallil explained.
“If these kings and queens are not part of our shared history as a people and if Baron Geisler is only using this to regain his showbiz career, it’s an incorrect method stemming from ill motives. Do what you need to do, but not in the name of the Sulu Sulanate. Not in the name of our people.”
According to Mawallil, “For an individual to be called a datu or given any royal title, one must have the bloodlines and lineage that uphold that title.”
“The Tausug don’t casually give titles to anyone, for any reason, even if those people ‘inspire’ others… Especially not if they are outsiders to our community and don’t understand our lived experience or know the depth of our history and our struggles,” Mawallil added.
Mawallil emphasized that bestowing royal status is not “a joke” for the Sultanate.
“I was made to understand from an early age that the Tausug treat royalty and lineage, along with our glorious past, as very important matters. Many conversations among our kin and elders revolve around how everyone in the community might be related to, or who may be part of a certain royal house. This is a source of pride for most of us who call ourselves ‘people of the current.'”
It can be recalled that Baron was conferred “the honorary title of Datu” by people claiming to be King Raja Mohammadmamay Hasan Abdurajak and Queen Maria Makiling Helen Fatima Nasaria Panolino Abdurajak, who called themselves as “heirs and successors to the throne of the Sultanate of Sulu and North Borneo,” in a media-covered ceremony held last Tuesday, September 10, in Quezon City.