Law minister: Decision on death penalty repeal after special committee presents findings

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Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar at a press conference after attending the Dewan Negara Conference at Parliament December 23, 2021. — Bernama pic
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar at a press conference after attending the Dewan Negara Conference at Parliament December 23, 2021. — Bernama pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 — The government will decide on the proposal to repeal the death penalty once the special committee formed two years ago to study the matter has presented its findings, said Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar.

The minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Parliament and Law) said the committee was expected to submit its findings soon.

“There have been repeated calls to abolish the death penalty. As minister, my role is to assess the effectiveness of these punishments as a deterrent. We must study this thoroughly before we come to a decision.

“We also need to see if the rehabilitation of convicts, if possible, would be the better option, and in the best interests of the greater society,” he said.

He added that the study aligned with governments aim to rehabilitate criminals, assimilate them back into their respective communities and become valuable members of society.

“If they have done their time, paid their dues, show genuine remorse for what they have done and have been completely rehabilitated, we should not close the door on them,” he added.

Pakatan Harapan had pledged to repeal the death penalty as part of its election manifesto, but faced resistance in its effort towards this.

In August of 2019, the PH administration formed the Special Committee to Review Alternative Punishments to the Mandatory Death Penalty to look for alternatives to the mandatory death sentence.

The PH government collapsed in February 2020, however, before the Bill for the abolition of the death penalty could be tabled in the March meeting of Parliament that year.

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