SUHAKAM welcomes support for death penalty moratorium
Graphic: Malaysia's parliament, Putrajaya
Malaysia has eight laws stipulating 12 offences which carry the mandatory death penalty and 21 offences which carry the discretionary death penalty.
The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) welcomes the Malaysian Government's support for the United Nations (UN)'s call for a moratorium on the use of the death penalty.
On 17 November 2020, 120 UN Member States including Malaysia have supported the UN General Assembly (UNGA)'s resolution regarding the moratorium on the use of the death penalty during the 75th session of the UNGA.
Among others, the resolution recommended that States should guarantee the right to fair trial and limit the imposition of the death penalty to the most serious crimes, pending the abolition of the death penalty.
Malaysia has eight laws stipulating 12 offences which carry the mandatory death penalty and 21 offences which carry the discretionary death penalty, including the Penal Code and the Firearms (Increased Penalties) Act 1971.
In 2019, the Government established a Special Committee to study and make recommendations on the alternatives to the mandatory death penalty and transitional measures for the current death row prisoners.
The Special Committee had conducted numerous public consultations across the country with the relevant stakeholders including the government agencies, civil society organisations, the families of the death row prisoners and the victims as well as the death row prisoners themselves.
The Special Committee submitted its report to the Government for their consideration in February 2020.
In this regard, SUHAKAM urges the Government to make public the report of the Special Committee and expedite its efforts in abolishing the mandatory death penalty in the country, as the first step towards total abolition of the death penalty.
Date: 20 November 2020
- Malaysia's parliament, Putrajaya - Photo by Trebz, Flickr CC