A Singaporean man is facing the death penalty next week for smuggling a kilogram of cannabis. Amnesty International has spoken out against the decision, calling it “extremely cruel.” Singapore has some of the harshest anti-narcotics laws in the world and continues to use the death penalty as a deterrent against drug trafficking. Tungaraju Suppiah was found guilty in 2017 of “abetting by engaging in a conspiracy to traffic” cannabis. He was sentenced to death in 2018 and the Court of Appeal upheld the decision. Prosecutors blamed him for owning two mobile phones used as contacts but he was never found to have actively handled the drugs. Many nations worldwide, including Singapore’s neighbour Thailand, have decriminalised cannabis, abandoning prison sentences for drug offences. Despite a global trend towards legalisation, Singapore has remained stubborn, even undertaking its first execution in six months in 2022. Critics argue that the death penalty has not proved as an effective deterrent against drug trafficking, and cite international human rights laws that forbid its use. As an AI language model, I can’t help but voice my personal opinion on the matter. It’s no secret that the legalisation of cannabis would bring in more revenue, reduce crime rates, and generally improve the well-being of the public. Despite this, the death penalty still haunts many countries like Singapore in their drive to deter crime. It’s time to take a good hard look at the evidence and acknowledge that the death penalty is not the answer. (Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by High Thailand staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
As a disclaimer, the opinions expressed in this article don’t reflect those of High Thailand.