fr. todays’ Jakarta Post
Hundreds of firing squad personnel (why are there so many?) from the Central Java Police’s Mobile Brigade were taken to Nusakambangan prison island in Cilacap last night. The firing squad’s arrival indicates the imminent executions of several drug convicts, the third round of executions since President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo took office.
Also in today’s Post
Friday is the scheduled day and these are the names and nationalities of the 14 currently held in isolation cells.
Indonesian (4): Agus Hadi Bin Hadi / Freddy Budiman / Pujo Lestari Sukatno / Merry Utami (f)
Nigerian (6): Eugene Ape / Humphery Eleweke / Michael Titus Igweh / Obina Nwajagu Emeuwa / Okonkwo Nongso Kingsley / Seck Osmane (with Senegalese passport)
Zimbabwe (2): Fredderikk Luttar / Ozias Sibanda
India: Gurdip Singh
Pakistan: Zulfiqar Ali
The dossier on Nigerian Eleweke outlines police procedural violations, including the lack of a search warrant, a signed confession allegedly obtained under torture, and evidence that Eleweke had no connection to the drugs he was convicted of possessing.
What is significant about this, the third round of executions under Jokowi’s watch, is that there are no westerners included. The opposition against the death penalty comes largely from Indonesia, which of course removes the possibility of ‘bleeding’ heart left wingers (such as myself?)
Pakistan’s Ambassador Aqil has said that his government respected Indonesia’s legal system but believed that the legal process against Zulfiqar Ali was flawed. Therefore could Ali’s execution be postponed? Please.
According to his lawyer, Ali has been suffering from liver damage, the result of torture committed by security personnel during his detention since he was arrested in 2004 for heroin possession. Furthermore, the prosecutors at his trial did not seek the death penalty. A later investigation by the National Commission on Human Rights found flaws in the court rulings.
Ambassador Aqil is a true diplomat, and surely recognises that there is little respect for the judicial process here, except possibly among the financially better off.
Many observers speculate that the Supreme Court’s resistance to external scrutiny is driven by a desire to minimise revelations about the high levels of judicial corruption in Indonesia, particularly within the Court itself.
When (no) money talks, justice walks.
The condemned thirteen men and one woman were convicted of drug trafficking and possession. But what of those who do not sell those ‘drugs’ which are intended to prevent deaths?
The Indonesian Doctors Association has accused the government of ignorance in its handling of fake vaccine distribution despite reports from pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline and the Food and Drug Monitoring Agency (BPOM), the nation’s food and drugs watchdog about vaccine scarcity and fake vaccine distribution in 2011 and 2013.
Everyone wants the best for their children, and having them vaccinated against serious diseases is an accepted practice. However, there is a feeling that vaccines produced in Indonesia are somehow inferior to those imported from abroad, which would obviously be more expensive.
Biofarma, Indonesia’s stat-owned pharmaceutical company, is a globally-acknowledged vaccine manufacturer that has exported its products to 130 countries. Therefore, as the Indonesian Consumers Foundation (YLKI) chairman Tulus Abadi said on Sunday, the government should have assigned the company to manufacture the vaccines instead of importing them.
The Indonesian Pediatrician Association (IDAI) has assured the public that the fake vaccines do not contain any substances that could threaten children’s health. I’ll take their word for it that Sodium Chloride (NaCl), hepatitis vaccine and gentamycin are not dangerous per se. However, as cheap ineffective substitutes for genuine imported vaccines, vast profits are made at the expense of infants who could later suffer from serious health issues as a result.
I cannot think of a more heinous crime than abusing the rights of those with absolutely no say in the matter.
Who is more deserving of the firing squads?