Indonesia executes three Nigerians for drug smuggling

Michael Titus Igweh

Indonesia has executed three Nigerians and one Indonesian convicted of drug smuggling by firing squad.

The country’s Deputy Attorney General, Noor Rachmad, told reporters outside the Nusakambangan prison in central Java that authorities have not decided when 10 other prisoners will be executed.

Human rights organisation Amnesty International condemned the executions as a “deplorable act that violates international and Indonesian law”.

Indonesia has some of the world’s toughest drug laws, and has faced intense criticism internationally for resuming executions.

Fourteen, mostly foreign, drug convicts were executed last year to widespread condemnation.

This, the third round of executions under President Joko Widodo, took place at Nusakambangan prison island.

Relatives had gathered there earlier in the day to say goodbye to loved ones, according to the Jakarta Post. It also said 17 ambulances were sent to the island – 14 of them carrying coffins.

One source told local media the execution took place at 00:45 Friday, having been postponed because of heavy rain and strong winds.

Those who were executed have been named as Indonesian Freddy Budiman, and three Nigerians – Seck Osmane, Humphrey Jefferson Ejike and Michael Titus Igweh.

Those who remain on death row include three other Indonesians, a Pakistani, an Indian, two other Nigerians and two Zimbabweans.

Activists have been particularly concerned by the cases of the Pakistani man, Zulfiqar Ali – who they say was beaten into confessing to heroin possession – and an Indonesian woman, Merri Utami – who says she was duped into becoming a drug mule.