17th May 2016
Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam
Republic of Singapore
Dear President Tan,
We from MARUAH, a human rights organisation, would like to lodge with you, our concerns and also ask that we stay the order to execute Jabing Kho, who is sentenced to be hanged on 20th May 2016, based on the letter received by his family.
We ask for this stay order and a review of the sentencing for the following reasons: –
1. While we agree that Jabing Kho should be punished, the punishment should not be death, especially when there is a lack of unanimity in sentencing Jabing Kho to death. In this case, where there are doubts as to the number of times Jabing Kho had hit the deceased, as highlighted by the dissenting judges, should the final outcome of the death penalty still be given to Jabing Kho? This is highly disturbing to all of us. As a human rights group we are against the death penalty.
2. Singapore amended the law concerning murder vide the Penal Code (Amendment) Act 2012, where the mandatory death penalty only remained for murder with the intention to kill. With the amendments, the Court is given the discretion to impose either the death penalty or imprisonment with caning. Doesn’t Jabing Kho deserve a review of his sentence?
3. It is unclear whether the President of Singapore has promised to look into his clemency appeal – if a plea is filed. We also assume that the execution will go on, in the absence of any plea.
While we may have different views on the death penalty it is equally important that Jabing Kho has the full weight of our law and justice behind him. Currently we do not feel that this is so and are concerned that Jabing Kho might pay this price.