KUALA LUMPUR: Amnesty International (AI) has called on the government to scrap the death penalty completely with no exceptions.
Its secretary-general Kumi Naidoo said Malaysia should join 106 other countries that have abolished death penalty for good.
“The announcement is a major step forward to those who have campaigned to bring an end to death penalty in Malaysia.
“Malaysia’s death penalty has stained its human rights record for years.
“In Malaysia, death row prisoners are often kept in the dark about the outcome of their clemency applications and notified of their executions just days or hours before they happen.
“With a bill on abolition set to be tabled next week, we are calling on the Malaysian Parliament to completely abolish the death penalty for all crimes, with no exceptions. There is no time to waste – the death penalty should have been consigned to the history books long ago,” Kumi said in a statement on Wednesday.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Liew Vui Keong said on Wednesday that amendments to existing laws imposing death sentence would be tabled in the next Dewan Rakyat sitting.
Liew said the necessary paperwork to abolish the penalty which was in the final stages had received the go-ahead from the Attorney-General’s Chambers.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Community Care Foundation (MCCF) suggested for the government to set up a special committee to look into the move.
“We should consider others’ opinions and get the facts from legal experts on the matter,” said its chairman Halim Ishak, adding decisions to abolish death penalty should not be done hastily.
“Also, there is no need for us to follow other countries which have scrapped death penalty. Our situation is different from theirs. We need to find out what the government wants to do in seeking justice for the family of the victims,” he said when contacted by NSTP today.