Jokowi told to assess deterrent effect of death penalty

The Jakarta Post – Human rights watchdog Imparsial has urged President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to gather a team to assess the validity of his argument that the death penalty can create a deterrent effect for drug dealers.

Jokowi’s insistence to keep the death penalty is groundless and has shown the current government lacks political commitment to uphold human rights, Imparsial researcher Evitarossi S Budiawan said in Jakarta on Wednesday.

Jokowi allowed the execution of 18 death row convicts during his administration.

Evitarossi cited a study conducted by Jeffrey A. Fagan, Columbia University director of the Center for Crime, Community and Law, who found that there is no empirical evidence to suggest that execution has a greater deterrent effect than long prison sentences.

” [Jokowi] has to [be able to] prove that execution in Indonesia actually creates a deterrent effect,” Evitarossi said, adding that the research team should consist of experts. She believes the result of such an assessment would be a strong reason to scrap the death penalty from national law.

She asserted that Indonesia should join other countries already committed to the UN General Assembly’s Dec. 18, 2007 resolution calling for a moratorium on executions, a move by UN member countries toward abolishing the death penalty, since the right to live is a Constitutional right that should not be violated. (bbn)


Marguerite Afra Sapiie
The Jakarta Post

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