SINGAPORE: ANOTHER DOUBLE DAWN HANGING CARRIED OUT
August 6, 2022:
Two more death row inmates were hanged at dawn on 5 August 2022 for drug trafficking in a double execution at Singapore's Changi Prison, after the inmates waited 10 hours until past midnight to learn if their appeal in court would succeed. (Source: Malaysianow, EFE, 05/08/2022)
Abdul Rahim Shapiee was executed alongside his co-accused in a drug case, Ong Seow Ping, after a week that saw judges giving tight deadlines to 24 prisoners who filed a suit against the government over their inability to seek the service of lawyers in the wake of heavy penalties slapped on those representing death row inmates.
The suit was thrown out by a Singapore court on Aug 3, a day after the prisoners were told to submit elaborate paperwork in support of their case despite their lack of counsel.
With no lawyers to represent them, one of the death row prisoners, Iskandar Rahmat, argued on their behalf.
Last night, after a 10-hour wait to learn the outcome of their appeal, the judge announced at 12.40am that the court had rejected their suit, calling it an "abuse of process" and paving the way for the executions just hours later.
This comes after the court had asked them to provide specific examples to back their claim that lawyers would not take up their cases, and submit them in a matter of hours.
Iskandar said the prisoners were dependant on visits from families in preparing the required affidavits.
"We were caught off guard and totally unprepared to prepare for such an urgent hearing," Iskandar was quoted as saying by Kirsten Han, one of the activists who have been vocal in condemning Singapore's recent prison executions.
Han said with the exception of Rahim, none of the 24 prisoners had had family visits since the claim was filed.
"There was therefore no way for them to communicate with their families on this matter."
The two hangings of 5 August take the number of prisoners executed in Singapore to 10 in just four months, as the city-state continues to shut out international condemnation over its spate of executions, the highest such toll this year in Southeast Asia.