Singapore must halt the execution of mentally disabled M’sian citizen Pausi Jefridin
14 February 2022
We refer to reports that Singapore will be proceeding with the execution of mentally disabled Malaysian citizen, Pausi bin Jefridin, on Wednesday, 16.02.2022.
Pausi, who has an IQ of only 67, clearly comes within the threshold of persons with intellectual disability and thus comes within the protection of Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Since Singapore has acceded to the CRPD, proceeding with the execution would mean that it is deliberately disregarding its international obligations.
Despite the international backlash that the Singaporean government received in November 2021 when they wanted to execute mentally disabled Nagaenthran a/l K Dharmalingam, they remain indifferent to civilised world opinion by once again planning to hang another mentally disabled person.
Time and time again, Singapore is wilfully ignoring its international obligations. Imposing the death penalty on persons with mental disability is contrary to customary international law, inhumane and sickening. Both international law and the Singapore constitution prohibits the execution of anyone who suffers from a mental disorder.
To further aggravate the matter, the Singapore government only informed Pausi’s family of the execution, on 09.02.2022, barely 7 days before execution date, despite knowing full well that the Covid-19 pandemic is far from over, inevitably causing great difficulties to travel to Singapore due to the stringent restrictions. This rush to execute an intellectually disabled person, is unfathomable.
Further, Nagaenthran Dharmalingam’s court challenge which has raised important questions on the legality of executing a mentally disabled person with an IQ below 70, is currently still pending in court.
Hence, Pausi who suffers the same condition, must not be executed whilst Nagaenthran’s appeal has yet to be decided. It is totally unacceptable to carry out this execution while the Courts have yet to decide on the critical legal and constitutional issues surrounding the execution of mentally disabled persons.
We further note that Roslan bin Bakar, a Singaporean citizen with borderline range of intellectual functioning is also to be hanged on the same day.
We therefore urge the Singapore government to halt Pausi Jefridin and Roslan Bakar’s execution immediately, review his case thoroughly and consider the exercise of Presidential clemency in light of their mental disability and Singapore’s treaty obligations under the CRPD.
Zaid Malek & Mahajoth Singh
Lawyers for Liberty