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The fight to save Jabing

Kirsten Han photo
Kirsten HanSingapore
The fight to save Jabing
It is less than 24 hours before the scheduled execution of Kho Jabing. We're not giving up.

How tightly can you cross your fingers?

Less than 48 hours before Kho Jabing’s scheduled execution, lawyer Gino Hardial Singh filed an application with the court, on grounds of apparent bias. The case will be heard at 2:30pm on Thursday. If it’s thrown out, Jabing will be headed for the noose at dawn on Friday. But there might, just maybe, a very big Maybe, be a stay of execution to stop a man from hanging on his sister’s birthday. 

That has to be enough for all of us now; for his family and all the activists, lawyers and campaigners who have been working on this case. Now if only I can stop feeling like my heart is going to leap out of my throat whenever I cough.

We’d thought we had more time. After Jabing’s criminal motion was dismissed in April this year, his then lawyer had sent a letter to the President saying that he intended to file a fresh clemency appeal. He thought he would have time to draft it. We thought we'd have to wait the usual three-month period for the President to consider the petition and make his decision. We thought this would give Jabing more time.

Then his sister, Jumai, received a letter on 12 May from the Singapore Prison Service, informing her that her brother was scheduled to die on 20 May. From the expectation of three months, we were suddenly only left with one week to save a man's life.

It'd already been a pretty intense ride, and this week just made it worse. Jabing has already been sentenced to death, then life, then death again. He'd almost been hanged once, and got a last-minute stay. He and his family are going to have to go through it again today.

There is not very much to say at the moment. There is only hope and prayer.

Updates to come.

#human rights, #death penalty, #singapore, #capital punishment