Usra Harahap, Indonesia’s ambassador to Nigeria, told Geoffrey Onyeama, minister of foreign affairs, that Ibrahim Abdulrahman, a Nigerian diplomat, was not assaulted by the Asian country’s immigration officers.
The federal government had written a protest letter to the Indonesian government after a video of the assault circulated on social media.
The diplomat, identified as Ibrahim Abdulrahman, was reportedly accosted by the Indonesian immigration officers when he went to a supermarket.
The video shows the man shouting “I can’t breathe” as he was being held down in a vehicle by several men.
According to NAN, in his meeting with Onyeama, Harahap said Abdulrahman was the aggressor during his encounter with some Indonesian immigration officers.
He said the immigration officers from South Jakarta immigration office were carrying out surveillance functions on foreigners and had asked Abdulrahman for identification.
He said the diplomat refused to identify himself or tender his passport.
The ambassador said they politely requested him to show his travel document, but “he answered that his passport was in his room”.
He said they then asked him to come to their office to check the travel documents through their system after which they would not investigate further If nothing wrong was found concerning the passport and residence permit.
Harahap said the diplomat got angry and said: “Just arrest me and you will regret to know who really I am”. But that the officers assured him that they would not detain him if he could show his identity card.
He said Abdulrahman agreed to be taken to the office and that “the officers treated him as an ordinary foreigner without any intimidation and didn’t handcuff him”.
He, however, said on the way to the office, Abdulrahman elbowed Laode Hauzan Baidi, the immigration officer, who was sitting next to him until Laode’s lip was bleeding.
He said this led to other officers to restrain him from attacking another officer during the trip.
However, Abdulrahman kept on resisting and shouting until to the point where it required officers to hold and calm him down.
He said owing to the incident that happened in the car, “officers detained him when they arrived at the South Jakarta Immigration Office because he continued to attack the officers”.
The Indonesian envoy said the Nigerian diplomat showed his identity card during the investigation at the office.