FEBRUARY 14 — Yesterday, the Singapore High court heard two suits by Malaysian death row prisoners Datchinamurthy Kataiah and Gobi Avedian. The suits were to stay their hanging pending investigations into the allegations of brutality during execution and over the threat made against the prisoners Singapore lawyer M. Ravi.
Both suits were heard and dismissed yesterday. Family members and supporters were present in court.
There was no fairness or due process in the manner in which the Singapore AG and court dealt with the two suits. At the behest of the AG, the High court rushed the hearing of the suits without giving adequate time to prisoner’s counsel to prepare and argue the matter. It was clear that they were bent on dismissing the suits and proceeding to execution.
Both Datchinamurthy and Gobi will be appealing against the two decisions to the Court of Appeal. The appeals are being expedited.
Among other issues, the appeal centres on rights of a person facing death sentence to have access to justice without any interference or threat upon their lawyer. This arises because of the Attorney General's blatant threat and confirmation that the Singapore Government will avail of a full range of options against the Malaysian prisoners lawyer M. Ravi.
We urge the Singapore government to cease the strong-arm tactics, and allow the Malaysian prisoners due process and a fair hearing.
We urge the Malaysian government to step in and make the necessary representations to Singapore in view of the denial of due process to the Malaysian prisoners.
* Press release by Zaid Malek, Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) legal coordinator and Malaysian lawyer for Datchinamurthy & Gobi, on February 14, 2020.
** This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of Malay Mail.