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Singapore Executes Nigerian Man found Guilty of Drug Trafficking after 8 years



Chijioke Stephen Obioha

Chijioke Stephen Obioha | Photo via: Ravi MRavi

The government of Singapore in the early hours of Friday, executed a Nigerian Chijioke Stephen Obioha, 35, for drug related offences.

Chijoke was first arrested on April 9 2007 and sentenced to the Mandatory Death Penalty in 2008 after being found guilty of trafficking more 2.6 kilogrammes of cannabis.

Following the announcement of the decision to execute him, Chijioke’s lawyer, Joseph Chen filed an Urgent Criminal Motion at the Court of Appeal but it was dismissed.

According to a Singapore Anti-Death Penalty Campaign member Ravi MRavi, Chijioke’s execution is ‘possibly the longest delay between sentencing and execution’ as he spent about 8 years on death row.

Ravi wrote on Facebook:

This morning, at 6am, the execution of Chijioke Stephen Obioha took place. I am not even sure if his family from Nigeria were able to attend. Soon it will be all forgotten together with Chijioke’s name, but for the many of us who fight and campaign to eradicate this barbaric practice of death by hanging, and for those of us who challenge the mandatory death penalty for drug trafficking in Singapore, our work will go on. And it must

Update: I’m currently arranging with the Roman Catholic Prison Ministry ( RCPM) to claim the body of Chijioke from the Singapore Prisons Service for a proper funeral in accordance with his religious beliefs.The funeral will take place either today or tomorrow depending on how soon the SPS could release the body.

The execution went against calls from the United Nations, European Union, and Amnesty International that his sentencing should be changed to life imprisonment.

Chijioke was graduate of Industrial Chemistry from the University of Benin, Edo State, Nigeria, and first went to Singapore for football trial.

Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, had earlier described the sentencing as “heartbreaking”.

Dabiri-Erewa  said this  in a statement  she issued on Thursday in Abuja through her Special Assistant on Media, Abdur-Rahman Balogun.

Dabiri-Erewa said  Obioha’s family was informed that his appeal for clemency had been rejected.

She described the sentence as disturbing despite repeated calls for Nigerians to desist from criminal activities such as drug peddling.

Dabiri-Erewa said there was nothing much that could be done other than to continue to appeal to the Singaporean authorities for clemency.

“Since Singapore is determined to enforce its laws as a deterrent to drug trafficking, which has reduced due to capital punishment, nothing much can be done except to continue to appeal. While we regret the death sentence passed on the Nigerian, we once again appeal to Nigerians to avoid crimes like drug trafficking, especially in Asia which has been declared zero tolerance,’’ she had said.

She had urged Nigerians to avoid drug peddling in their host countries as laws of countries, “no matter its merits, will be difficult to influence’’.



  1. Ada

    November 18, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    No matter how our men are executed, more will still carry drugs to these aisan nations which carry the death penalty. It is better to hustle back home in naija than end up executed abroad.

  2. We're talking weed not cocaine right?

    November 18, 2016 at 3:27 pm

    The guy was carrying Igbo (weed), not cocaine oh Igbo.

    That’s how you know Nigeria is not a brand abeg, another country would have gotten this guy out.

    Executing someone for Igbo. Coke, heroine, etc, I agree but Igbo. Come on

    • Cherry

      November 18, 2016 at 8:32 pm

      Considering the penalty was stated clearly on his visa, why should the cross be on Nigeria to sort out?
      This guy, was well aware of the consequences but he derailed and Singapore, carried out its officially approved punitive measures.
      Stop whining and give me a break. Your fellow citizen, brought this upon himself.

  3. Uwem

    November 18, 2016 at 3:38 pm

    May his soul rest in peace, very sad.

  4. Corolla

    November 18, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    So sad!

  5. Idomagirl

    November 18, 2016 at 8:08 pm

    Tragic ?

  6. Evab

    November 18, 2016 at 9:01 pm

    This man and many others have died because of the failure of the Nigerian state to provide a thriving and liveable country for ALL its citizens. Its easy for people to judge if you havent suffered to the point that losing life and limb becomes no longer a deterrent. Whether it’s those who drown in the Mediterranean everyday, or those who have taken a wrong turn in life because of desperation to survive and we’re killed or ended up dead. May you all rest in peace.

    • Nedu

      November 19, 2016 at 4:37 pm

      Evab I commend you, you got soul. They don’t understand…

  7. Lala

    November 18, 2016 at 10:51 pm

    The Nigerian state has its failings no doubt but also, parents who have more children than they can cater for need to be brought to book.
    Should we bring the Chinese system of restricting the number of offsprings?

    Even educated people today are falling into this trap without thinking. If you’re a man in Nigeria today earning N300,000, why have 4 kids? Even if your spouse is earning say N150,000.
    Rent is between 300k to N700k per annum in major cities where work is available. School fees for very basic private primary schools where all the teachers are not necessarily top notch is about N80,000. Multiply by 4 kids and you have N320,00 x 3 terms a year and it comes to N960,000 per year just to educate your kids each year on a not so fantastic salary.

    Then add school bus pick up and drop off costs + after school lessons and medical care. Feeding, bills, generator and fuel, car maintenance and you find that at the end of the year you have little or nothing left.

    I see so many of my husbands agemates with 4 kids and a bank career that is ever shaky and you wonder why so many young men just approaching 40 are dropping dead across Nigeria, especially in Lagos.

    Let’s save ourselves from having too many kids that we can’t provide for so they don’t end up like this young man. No social security Nigeria so 2 children or three at most is okay. Let’s live to enjoy our lives not training excess children into old age.

  8. Temi

    November 19, 2016 at 4:01 am


  9. nnenne

    November 19, 2016 at 11:58 am

    I am saddened!!
    After studying Industrial Chemistry?

  10. Nedu

    November 19, 2016 at 4:42 pm

    “The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone”
    Harriet Beeches Stowe.

  11. Tony Z

    November 20, 2016 at 6:17 am

    Such a fine young man. young Life wasted for nothing, I console his parents and feel sorry for their predicament. May God receive him into his eternal mercy.

  12. chika

    November 28, 2016 at 11:01 pm

    law indeed is an axe

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