KUALA LUMPUR: The family of Jabing Kho is making a last-ditch effort to petition for clemency, which if approved could mean the Sarawakian has another three months before a decision is announced on whether to go ahead with the death sentence or not.
According to a report by the Star Online, the petition is being organised by NGO We Believe In Second Chances, which is also working with the Singapore Anti-Death Penalty Campaign group to get as many signatures as possible for a petition to be submitted to Singapore president Tony Tan.
“Usually from the day the petition is submitted, there is around three months before the President’s decision is announced,” said founding member Kirsteen Han.
Han held a press conference with Jabing’s family members on Sunday, urging for more support from Sarawakian politicians.
“We understand it (hanging) can be anytime. We wish to have Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s help. Help us appeal to Singapore. Ask for a lesser penalty. Don’t have him hanged,” said Jabing’s sister Jumai Kho.
Their mother Lenduk told reporters she was sorry for her son’s actions.
“I only have one son. I’m asking for help to not have him hanged, ” she said.
Sarawak Advocates’ Association president Leonard Shim has lent his support, saying Jabing deserves a second chance.
He said no one was questioning Singapore’s legal system, but that “everyone deserves a second chance”, and highlighted the fact that Malaysia also has the death penalty, which he said should be done away with.
This will be the second plea for clemency, with Tan rejecting the previous plea on Oct 19 last year.
Jabing’s bid to commute a death sentence by Singapore’s Court of Appeal failed last month, with his bid unanimously thrown out by the Court of Appeal.
The 31-year-old from Ulu Baram, Sarawak, was found guilty of killing a Chinese construction worker with a tree branch back in 2008 during a robbery attempt.
Jabing was sentenced to death in 2010.
In 2013, the Singapore government amended the mandatory death penalty that gave judges the discretion to choose between death and life imprisonment with caning for murder, as well as certain cases of drug trafficking.
In August 2013, following revisions to the mandatory death penalty laws, the High Court sentenced him to life and 24 strokes of the cane instead.
The prosecution challenged the decision before the Court of Appeal, which again sentenced Jabing to death in a 3-2 majority decision earlier this year.
Jabing was scheduled to be executed on Nov 6, but received a stay the day before, after his lawyer filed a motion raising points of law about the case’s handling. – FMT