Jakarta – The authorities are considering applying heavy security when former Jakarta governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama is released from prison on Feb. 24 next year after serving time on a blasphemy conviction.
"If the situation does not allow regular protection, we will apply heavy security on the release day," the Law and Human Rights Ministry's correction facilities director general spokesman, Ade Kusmanto, said as quoted by kompas.com on Wednesday.
Ade said the directorate would cooperate with the police in the matter. "We expect Ahok's sympathizers will be there. We also predict the anti-Ahok crowd will be there on the day," Ade said.
According to Ade, his office was responsible only for Ahok's safety inside the prison. "After his release, his safety becomes the responsibility of the police," he said.
Ahok was sentenced to two years in prison on May 9, 2017. He is expected to be released on Jan. 24, after receiving a two-month remission in August and another 15 days at Christmas last year. Ahok is expected to be given another one-month remission this Christmas. (gis)