Latest: Singapore single mother awaits death row in Malaysia for drug trafficking. On the pretext of a business trip to China, Iqah was handed a suitcase containing heroin arranged by her Nigerian boyfriend and was arrested by Malaysian Immigration. A campaign is underway to raise funds for the appeal. To find out more, read

We have also heard that since Vui Kong's appeal started, there has been an unofficial stay of execution for all prisoners on death row in Changi Prison, pending the decision of the court on Yong's case. As the case has been dismissed by the Court of Appeal, we anticipate a Changi gallows bloodbath in a scale not seen since the Pulau Senang uprising in 1965 when 18 men were convicted of murder and hanged in a single Friday morning.

Singapore, which routinely persecute dissenters and critics, continue to hang young drug runners while at the same time work closely with Burmese military generals, and has invested billions in business ties with Burma, one of the biggest heroin manufacturing countries the world.

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If you know someone who's charged in a capital case, received the death sentence, or is on death row in Singapore and if you have have your side of the story to tell, contact us at sgdeathpenalty [at] gmail.com


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

FIDH calls for presidential pardon for Vui Kong

 Paris - Kuala Lumpur, 25 August 2010 - The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), representing 164 organisations across the world, calls on the Singaporean authorities to uphold the right to life, as enshrined in international law, and urges HE S. R. Nathan, President of Singapore, to exercise his constitutional power to grant a pardon to Mr. Yong Vui Kong, a 22-year-old Malaysian national, who has been sentenced to death by hanging. 
Mr Yong, from Sabah, Malaysia, was 19 years old when he was arrested on 13 June 2007 in Singapore for drug possession and was later charged with trafficking 47.27g of diamorphine under Section 5(1)(a) of the Misuse of Drugs Act. He was convicted by the Singapore High Court in 7 January 2009 and sentenced to death by hanging (1). In December 2009, Mr Yong appealed against his sentence but not his conviction, admitting his action was wrong and in violation of the law. In a trial marred by public comments by executive officials, undermining the independence of the judicial proceedings, his appeal was dismissed on 14 May 2010 by Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong. At this final stage in the proceedings, Mr. Yong’s only escape from the gallows is a presidential pardon commuting his sentence from execution to life imprisonment, on the advice of the Cabinet, pursuant to Article 22(P) of the Constitution of the Republic of Singapore.

Several mitigating factors point towards the appropriate use of a presidential pardon in this case. Mr. Yong was born into a disadvantaged and vulnerable family situation. After his family moved to the estate of another family member, where Mr. Yong and his mother were repeatedly abused, Mr. Yong moved on his own as a youth to Kuala Lumpur. In addition, Mr Yong is repentant for his crime and has openly recognised his wrong-doing. He has consequently embraced Buddhism while incarcerated and has been educating his fellow inmates as well as the wider public on the destructive nature of drugs, hoping to use his remaining days to provide positive guidance to young people like himself.

FIDH opposes the death penalty in all circumstances as a cruel, inhuman punishment that violates one of the most fundamental human rights: the right to life. In addition, our Organisation wishes to underline that execution of drug traffickers both in Singapore as well as in other parts of the world has had no apparent or proven deterrent effect on drug trafficking. Despite Law Minister Shanmugam’s words to the contrary, there is no empirical data supporting the deterrence effect of the death penalty for drug crimes, especially among indigent and vulnerable sectors of society. In this particular case, FIDH invites the Singaporean authorities, in particular President Nathan, to consider Mr Yong’s repentance, background, and the positive message his rehabilitation and reform can send to young people around world in commuting Mr. Yong’s sentence to life in prison. To this end, FIDH strongly urges a presidential pardon be granted to Mr Yong and calls the Singaporean government to take concrete steps towards abolishing the death penalty.

2 comments:

  1. First of all, I'm not a cruel person. But I think that a law is a law.

    If anyone with disadvantaged and vulnerable family situation, repentant for his crime and has openly recognised his wrong-doing, embraced Buddhism while incarcerated and has been educating his fellow inmates as well as the wider public on the destructive nature of drugs can be pardon, there might as well be another law stating that anyone with the above condition met will be treated as a 17 years old where death penalty should not be a punishment.

    The abuse of drug took many lives. The killing of the person who bring drugs into Singapore will save a lot of others. This act as a deterrence to other drug trafficker which result in more lives saved.

    Punishment should always be heavier than the benefit from the crime committed. People can choose to learn thing the hard way (education, reading, etc) or learn through the painful way.

    It should be the responsibility of the person himself to learn the law of the country they want to go to. Ignorance is not an excuse to escape punishment. If anyone is ignorant, they can only blame themselves for their laziness.

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