Monday, 21 August 2006

Singapore forum against death penalty

The Singapore Anti Death Penalty Campaign (SADPC) is organising a forum and debate on the death penalty on 27 August. The event will also highlight the largely unnoticed cases of two Africans who are currently on death row.

Iwuchukwu Amara Tochi, 19, and Okele Nelson Malachy, 33, lost appeals against their death sentences on 16 March. They were arrested at Changi Airport on 27 November 2004 and later convicted of trafficking heroin into Singapore.

Singapore's Misuse of Drugs Act (Cap. 185) carries a mandatory death sentence for anyone found guilty of trafficking in more than 15 grams of heroin.

Unlike the highly publicised case of Australian citizen Van Tuong Nguyen, who was executed in Singapore on 2 December 2005, Tochi and Malachi have received very little media attention.

Tochi is from Nigeria and according to some reports Malachy is from South Africa, although he does not have current proof of his citizenship.

The two men have filed appeals for clemency with the Singapore President -- their final avenue of appeal -- although clemency is almost never granted.

For readers who wish to take action to try to save Tochi and Malachy, see Amnesty International's letter-writing action.

For readers in Singapore who are interested in attending, here is further information taken from SADPC's publicity material for the event.


Forum/Debate on The Death Penalty
27th August, Asia Hotel
37 Scotts Rd, 2.30-5.30 pm
(Next to Newton MRT Station)
"Please don't allow them to kill me," pleads 19-year-old Nigerian prison inmate Iwuchukwu Amara Tochi. "I don't understand why they have to kill somebody for something like this."


Debate for and against the Death Penalty, for Drugs, for Murder, in Singapore and Everywhere,

  • Lee Weng Choy, Art Critic and Cultural Activist.
  • Alex Au, Gay Rights Activist, Social Commentator and Editor of Yawning Bread.
  • Moderator: Lucy Davis, Editor, Forum On Contemporary Art & Society.
Input from:

  • Tochi’s Lawyer and Anti Death Penalty campaigner, M. Ravi
  • Madam Letchumi Murugesu, Mother of Shanmugam Murugesu, executed last year
And messages from:

  • Amnesty International
  • World Coalition Against the Death Penalty
  • Nigerian Civil Liberties Organisation
  • Australian Council Against The Death Penalty
  • UN Desk on Extra Judicial Killing
  • Video plea from Tochi's brother in Nigeria
The Singapore Anti Death Penalty Campaign (SADPC) comprises a concerned group of Singaporeans and residents from diverse backgrounds who have come together over the issue of the Death Penalty. Through a series of debates and events we hope to foster a public debate on the practice of capital punishment in Singapore and throughout the world.


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