Hope did not meet Chijioke in the end and he was eventually executed at 6am Friday 18th November for a drug trafficking offence that he was found guilty of more than 9 years ago. The whole of this week, several of us were busy campaigning, working with a research team and supporting lawyers (in particular Joseph Chen) on filing a constitutional challenge to the impending execution. The application was based on the question whether a prolonged delay and the supervening events in the execution of the death sentence contravened Article 9(1) of the Singapore Constitution in so far as it amounted to cruel and inhumane treatment. Sadly, this application was dismissed by the Court of Appeal the evening before the execution. On the day of the execution, this article was published by The Online Citizen and since then a group of us tried to assist with funeral arrangements only to find out that the Roman Catholic Prison Ministry held the ceremony confidentially and one where no one else was permitted to attend.
Ironically, even his name was spelt wrongly on the list …. almost signifying that errors are inevitable but that the death penalty is irreversible.
A sad week, but one that will not diminish our resolve to end the mandatory death penalty regime for drug offences in Singapore.