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SUHAKAM calls for moratorium on death penalty

Graphic: Man sits alone on a bed in cell

SUHAKAM stated that judges should be given their discretionary power to decide on a sentence for a convicted person.

The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) has called on the government to review the relevance of capital punishment, recommending a moratorium on the death penalty.

Referring to the execution of brothers Rames and Suthar Batumalai, SUHAKAM Chairperson Tan Sri Razali Ismail said in a statement that "the mandatory death penalty must be abolished so that judges will be given their discretionary power to decide on a sentence for a convicted person".

"SUHAKAM reiterates that the mandatory imposition of the death penalty violates the basic right to life, as enshrined in international human rights law as it constitutes an arbitrary deprivation of life, as well as denies judges the possibility of taking into account the facts of the offence or the characteristics of each individual offender for the purposes of sentencing."

Rames, 45, and Suthar, 40, were sentenced to death in April 2010 under Section 302 of the Penal Code after being found guilty of murdering Krishnan Raman on 4 February 2006. The two had maintained their innocence of the crime.

Date: 16 March 2017

Source: Human Rights Commission of Malaysia


Image credits

  1. Man sits alone on a bed in cell - APF/James Iliffe