ASIA/INDONESIA - Catholic religious: justice for the murder of a young Indonesian immigrant

Thursday, 14 July 2022

Jakarta (Agenzia Fides) - Adelina Jemira Sau (also called Adelina Lisao) was an immigrant worker from Indonesia hired as a domestic worker in a Malaysian family in Penang, Malaysia. The young woman, victim of a network of traffickers, was beaten and tortured and died in 2018 at the age of 21, in the family home where she worked. Doctors determined that the girl had suffered daily abuse and violence. Ambika Shan, 62, the woman with whom the young woman served, was accused of killing Adelina Lisao, but on June 23, 2022, the Federal Court of Malaysia, in a third-degree sentence, after the verdict of the Court of Appeal, acquitted and released her.
The sentence soon aroused sharp criticism in Indonesian civil society, especially among those who defend human rights and the rights of migrants, including Jesuit priest Fr. Ignazio Ismartono SJ, and Sister Laurentina, SDP, who have become an icon for her commitment against the practices of human trafficking and violence against migrants. Together with several human rights activists, Fr. Ismartono SJ and Sister Laurentina SDP joined the so-called "Indonesian Coalition in search of justice for Adelina".
"Our humanity cannot accept this acquittal", the Jesuit priest told Fides.
According to Sister Laurentina, the Coalition expressed its concern, asking the Indonesian government to take the necessary diplomatic steps to address the case and seek justice. "We also need to review the professional and commercial cooperation agreements on migrant worker issues between our two nations", she notes. "Seeking justice for our deceased migrant workers is not easy", Sister Laurentina stressed to Fides.
The Migrant Protection Office of the Indonesian Foreign Ministry also criticized the recent ruling, believing that "this move clouds efforts to seek justice". Even if the judicial process has come to an end, we will look for another possibility to file a lawsuit in a different way", said the Migrant Protection Office. (MH) (Agenzia Fides, 14/7/2022)