On this day, the Singapore Anti-Death Penalty Campaign (SADPC) would like to renew our solidarity with international and regional non-governmental organisations, fellow activists and governments working against the death penalty.
With the recent events on the regional front, the issues surrounding the death penalty has been heavily discussed in Japan, Taiwan, South Korea, Malaysia and here in Singapore. Human rights advocacy groups and activists in these respective countries are proposing for their governments to work towards the total abolishment of the death penalty. We support the calls and efforts undertaken and we look forward to the day where the death penalty ceases to exist.
In the past year, we have been campaigning on the case of Yong Vui Kong, a Malaysian youth on death row who was caught carrying 47 grams of heroin on June 13, 2007. He was 18 at the time of his arrest. It has been quite a journey and we have seen the campaign growing beyond our shores. The support we have received from our Malaysian colleagues and their network is motivating and we will definitely continue our campaign efforts to keep Yong Vui Kong alive and to advocate for a second chance.
Singapore, according to the research by Amnesty International, has the highest rate of execution by hanging per capita. However there has been no transparency in the statistics made known to public knowledge. Along with the death penalty for violent crimes such as murder, Singapore also practises the application of mandatory death penalty for non-violent crimes like drug trafficking.
We would like to take this opportunity to express our stand that the death penalty as a whole is not the absolute solution to deter violent and drug related crimes. Instead, it violates an individual’s right to be given a chance to be rehabilitated, reformed and repent. All human beings should be treated with humanity, criminals or otherwise. So let us all join hands together to work towards making the death penalty history.
Singapore Anti-Death Penalty Campaign (SADPC)