Two Nigerians are currently on death row in Indonesia, awaiting execution. According to media report in Jakarta on Wednesday, the unidentified Nigerians are among 15 convicts scheduled to be executed any time soon for drug trafficking.
The executions would the first since eight drug convicts – five of which were foreign – were executed in April 2015, a move which roiled relations between Jakarta and other countries and led Australia to temporarily withdraw its ambassador. An earlier round of executions occurred in January last year.
Central Java Police spokesman, Liliek Darmanto, confirmed that authorities were preparing a new round of executions, adding that one Pakistani, two Nigerians, two Senegalese, one Zimbabwean and four Chinese nationals were among those to be executed. He said:
“There are five Indonesians, one woman and four men and there are 10 foreign citizens.”
He also said among other foreigners on death row for drug trafficking were Mary-Jane Veloso from the Philippines, Lindsay Sandiford from Britain and Frenchman Serge Atlaoui, though he did not clearify if they were among those scheduled to be put to death or not.
Darmanto, however, said no date has been fixed for the execution, but that 150 police shooters had been appointed to carry out the task:
”They have practiced for days, so that the execution can be conducted any time. Under Indonesian law, each convict would face a squad of 10 shooters.”
Indonesian President Joko Widodo, who took office in 2014, has taken a tough stance against drug trafficking, saying that the country was facing a drug emergency. Last year, 14 convicts were executed, all but two of them foreigners, in a move that drew international condemnation.
The office of Attorney General H.M. Prasetyo had previously said that a new round of executions could be expected to take place in the near future, though the dates of the executions as well the names of the inmates have not been disclosed.
According to the Ministry of Justice of Indonesia, no fewer than 121 people are currently on death row in Indonesia, this number includes 35 foreigners, mostly convicted of drug-related crimes. By Indonesian law, the government must give 72 hours’ notice before carrying out executions. Coordinating Minister for Politics, Law and Security Affairs Lujut Pandjaitan said last month that a press conference would also be held three days before the executions.