Indonesia, on Friday [Feb. 20], announced the postponement of the execution of eight drug convicts on death row for up to three weeks, citing a delay in preparations. Attorney-General spokesman, Tony Spontana, said the executors surveying the facilities on Nusakambangan penal Island, off Javafound, discovered that it was not ready to handle the executions.
“The execution plan is still on schedule since the inmates’ clemency appeals have been rejected,” he said. Spontana said because of the technical reasons, the executions are likely to be postponed for two or three weeks. “We have not decided on a date yet, but once the renovation is finished, we will immediately transfer them; maybe next week or two weeks,” he said.
The convicts are Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran.
They are the ringleaders of a group of nine Australians arrested in 2005 for attempting to smuggle 8.3 kilogrammes or 18.3 pounds of heroin to Australia from the Indonesian resort Island of Bali.
Other convicts expected to be shot by firing squad in the second round of executions in 2015 include one each from Brazil, France, Ghana, the Philippines, Nigeria and Indonesia.
The Australian government has repeatedly appealed to Indonesia to show mercy to Chan (31) and Sukumaran (33), saying they have been rehabilitated. Chan and Sukumaran were the ringleaders of the ‘Bali Nine’ who were arrested in Indonesia in 2005 for trying to smuggle 8.3 kilogrammes of heroin to Australia.
This week, the family of the Brazilian drug convict, Rodrigo Gularte, also appealed to the government to spare him, saying he has been diagnosed with mental illness.