Four Nigerians among the eight executed in Indonesia

Four Nigerian men are among the eight people executed in Indonesia along with one man from Brazil, one Indonesian and two Australians believed to be ring leaders of the Bali Nine drug smuggling ring. A woman from the Philippines and a Frenchman were temporarily reprieved.

executed in IndonesiaThe names of the four Nigerian men are Martin Anderson, Raheem Agbaje Salami, Silvester Obiekwe Nwolise and Okwuduli Oyatanze.

Okwuduli Oyatanze

Oyatanze who was 41, was sentenced to death after being found guilty of attempting to bring 2.5kgs of heroin through Jakarta in capsules inside his stomach in 2002.

It is believed Oyatanze became involved in drug smuggling after the collapse of his clothing company and he assumed that being a drug mule would be “easy money”.

He started a garment business in 1999, travelling between Indonesia and Nigeria to buy and sell clothing. After the business collapsed he was left heavily in debt, he then travelled to Pakistan to try and revive his business and it was there he met a fellow Nigerian based there who suggested a plan for him.

The plan involved swallowing a large amount of capsules with heroin concealed inside before boarding a flight to Jakarta. He was advised that there was easy money to be made once he had become a drugs courier.

Martin Anderson

Anderson 50, was sentenced in 2004 after being found in possession of about 50g of heroin. Originally thought to be Ghanaian, after he had travelled to Indonesia using a false passport but further investigation revealed he was from Nigeria.

Arrested in Jakarta in 2003 and according to reports from his lawyer, Kusmanto, Anderson was shot in the leg during his arrest – a method known to be used by the Indonesian police when apprehending suspects. His wound was known to still bother him up until the time of his execution.

The Supreme Court in Indonesia ruled that they would not consider Mr Anderson’s appeal for a judicial review of his conviction and death sentence until after he was he was executed.

Raheem Agbaje Salami also known as Jamiu Owolabi Abashin

Abashin 50, was sentenced to death in 2006 after he was arrested in Surabaya with 5.5kg of heroin and had been originally sentenced to life in prison in 1999.

He was known to be homeless and living on the streets of Bangkok            in 1998, when a fellow African living there took pity on him and brought him into his home. Soon after arriving, his new “friend” asked Abashin whether he wanted a quick paying job in which he would get $400 just for bringing a package of clothing to the friend’s wife in Surabaya, Indonesia where she sold used clothes.

Soon after agreeing, he wished he hadn’t, the package contained nearly 6kgs of heroin and he was arrested soon after landing at Surabaya’s airport. He was travelling on a false Spanish passport and contended that he had been duped.

The Indonesian government referred to him as Raheem Agbaje Salami, the name on the fake Spanish passport he was using when he was arrested.

Silvester Obiekwe Nwolise

Nwolise, 47, was convicted and sentenced to death in 2002 for smuggling just over a kilogram of heroin into Indonesia.

His story, no difference to those of other Nigerians on Indonesia’s death row for drug related offences. Nwolise was unemployed in Lagos and was lured to Pakistan by fellow Nigerians on the promise of employment with a good wage.

After arriving in Pakistan, instead of the job offer he was promised, he was advised to swallow some capsules filled with goat powder after being told that they did not want to pay any tax for importing it into Indonesia. Soon after arriving at Jakarta airport the police caught and X-rayed him and the found the capsules with drugs inside.

Nwolise, married an Indonesian Ms. Fatimah whom he met when she was accompanying a friend who was visiting another inmate. They had two children now aged 5 and 3 but they had not been brought to see their father since they were infants and she often told them that he was working in an office in another country.

Indonesia drug problems

Before the executions a case of emergency had been claimed by Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s based on questionable statistics.

He recited that some astonishing 4.5million Indonesians need to be rehabilitated due to their illicit drug use and that between 40 to 50 young people die each day due to drug related causes.

Jokowi, as he is popularly known in Indonesia argued that applying a no-compromise, punitive approach is necessary in order to combat the state of emergency represented by these numbers. There has not been any real evidence to suggest the accuracy of the figures parroted by the media and national officials.

Death Penalty Double Standard

‘Indonesia is begging for its citizens to escape the death penalty, meanwhile Indonesia’s firing squad executes inmates, it’s not fair,’ says brother of domestic worker saved from death penalty in Saudi Arabia

The Indonesian government has been working hard to prevent the execution of an Indonesian domestic worker Satinah Binti Jumadi Ahmad, sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia after murdering robbing her Saudi employer’s wife.

The government launched a formal appeal for pardon to Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah to pardon Ahmad after Ahmad’s family had paved way for pardon by paying the victim’s family around US$1.9m. The money legally recognised as blood money was requested by the victim’s family and according to sharia law in the kingdom, the victim’s family can accept payment instead of execution. The money was raided by the government and contributions from businesses.