In the Netherlands, the death penalty was already abolished by 1870 and the constitution and conventions make it impossible to re-introduce this penalty. In many countries, however, such as the US, China, and Egypt, the death penalty is still an accepted form of punishment. So, for a part of the world’s population, it is still a daily reality. This is also the case in Uganda. What do you do then, when you are sentenced to death row? Do you accept your fate? Or do you fight it?

In 2002, Susan Kigula was found guilty of murdering her husband and subsequently sentenced to death. She spent years on death row without knowing when (or if) the sentence would be carried out. Behind bars, she studied law, challenged the state, and was released in 2019 after years of litigation. Now she stands up for those sentenced to death as her fight against the death penalty continues.

The event will be introduced and moderated by prof. mr. Jolande uit Beijerse (ESL), Professor of Judicial Youth Interventions and Associate Professor of Criminal Law. After a brief introduction to the theme, she will give the floor to Susan Kigula to tell her story. Afterwards, there will be the possibility to ask questions.

Photographer Jan Banning took pictures of death row inmates and cell complexes for his Law & Order series. He made portraits of Susan Kigula when she was in prison and just after her release.

More information:

  • Date: 18 – 10 – 2021
  • Time: 19:30 – 21:00 Doors open: 19:00
  • Location: Erasmus Paviljoen, Woudestein
  • Entrance: Free, please sign up via our ticket shop.


COVID check
For this program we kindly ask you to show your COVID Certificate at the entrance with the CoronaCheck app. Please visit this page for all applicable corona measures at the Erasmus University.

Image by Jan Banning

This lecture was instigated in collaboration with Paula en Jan Banning/HAL (Holland Amerika Lijn) and is organized by Studium Generale, JFR (Juridische Faculteitsvereniging Rotterdam), en CIA (Criminologie In Actie).