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Sayang Sabah - The voice of Sabahans

Suhakam lauds proposal to abolish death sentences on drug offences

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KUALA LUMPUR:  The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) lauds the proposal to abolish the mandatory death sentence on drug-related offences.

Its chairman Tan Sri Hasmy Agam said Suhakam believed the positive development would place Malaysia on par with many other nations which lately had begun to take the step to abolish the mandatory death sentence.

“Suhakam hopes that the proposal for the amendment will be submitted quickly to Parliament, and while waiting for the decision, a suspension of all offences bringing the death sentence be implemented,” he said in a statement here, today.

He said Suhakam also urged the government to review crime laws to ensure that if a death sentence was imposed for an offence, it must only be for the most serious crimes as defined in International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

He said Suhakam also recommended that Malaysia joined ICCPR and the Second Choice Protocol and endeavour towards abolishing the death sentence in Malaysia, subsequently joining about 140 of 193 nations in the United Nations which had done away with the death sentence or had introduced a moratorium whether in law or in practice.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nancy Shukri yesterday was reported as saying the government planned to introduce a bill to abolish the mandatory death sentence for several heavy crimes especially related to drug offences and possession of firearm.

Nancy said the bill, which was expected to be tabled in the Dewan Rakyat in March next year, would return the punishments on offenders to the discretion of the judge.- BERNAMA

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