Singapore: Stop the execution of Yong Vui Kong

In an unprecedented development, Yong Vui Kong received a second stay of execution by the Court of Appeal in Singapore on 8 December, enabling his appeal to be heard.

Without the campaigning of people like you, the stay would not have been granted. We need to keep up the international pressure for Yong Vui Kong.

Yong Vui Kong was arrested in June 2007 at the age of 19 and was charged with trafficking 42.27 grams of heroin. He was sentenced to death in January 2009 and petitioned for clemency from the President of Singapore but this petition was rejected on 1 December.

Singapore has a mandatory death sentence for drug-trafficking. This means that the court that sentenced him had no option but to sentence Yong Vui Kong to death. His lawyers are appealing on the grounds that this is unconstitutional and his case should therefore be referred back to the trial judge for “reconsideration”.

However, if his appeal is unsuccessful, he may be executed.

Only the President of Singapore has the power to commute his death sentence.

Take Action

PLEASE WRITE to the President of Singapore in English, Mandarin or your own language:

• Urging the president to reconsider Yong Vui Kong’s clemency petition and commute his death sentence;

• Expressing concern that because the death penalty is mandatory for drug-trafficking offences, the court that sentenced Yong Vui Kong to death had no discretion to sentence him to an alternative punishment;

• Calling on the president to introduce a moratorium on executions, with a view to complete abolition of the death penalty.

SEND APPEALS TO:

President

His Excellency SR Nathan

Office of the President

Istana, Orchard Road

Singapore

Salutation: Your Excellency

Or

H.E. T Jasudasen High Commissioner

HIGH COMMISSION OF THE REPUBLIC OF SINGAPORE

209, Jalan Tun Razak 50400 Kuala Lumpur

Additional Information

The authorities in Singapore do not release any information about the use of the death penalty in the country. At least one person is known to have been hanged so far in 2009, and at least three sentenced to death; in 2008, at least one person was hanged and five sentenced to death. The true figures are likely to be higher. The government has always maintained that the death penalty is not a human rights issue, and consistently lobbied other nations against the abolition of the death penalty.

All capital cases are tried by the High Court; convicted prisoners can appeal, and if they are unsuccessful they can apply to the president for clemency. President Nathan, who has been in power since 1999, is not known to have granted clemency to any condemned prisoner.

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