International World M Ravi invited to a death penalty case in Africa - and...

M Ravi invited to a death penalty case in Africa – and here’s why it matters




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Prominent Human Rights Lawyer has a thing or two to share about life hacks – keep soldiering on and life will reward you with more successes.

In Oct 2016, M Ravi was barred from applying for a practising certificate in Singapore for two years by the Court of Appeal of Singapore, which said the sanction was to safeguard public interest and uphold the integrity of the legal profession.

In another article by this publication, It takes a “man without brakes” to mount constitutional challenges in Singapore, we have highlighted that M Ravi is perhaps Singapore’s leading constitutional and human rights lawyer who has earned an international reputation for his work and has been instrumental in the abolition of the mandatory death penalty in Singapore.

Even though he has been barred from practising here in Singapore, his talent is recognized the world over and he was invited to Norway by World Coalition Against Death Penalty in 2016 to partner death penalty lawyers from Pakistan and Tanzania.

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In a Facebook post, lawyer M Ravi revealed that he is involved in the constitutional challenge against the mandatory death penalty in Tanzania. He is part of a legal team led by lawyer Fulgence Massawe.

Tanzania is a commonwealth country and their legal system is based on common law, similar to Singapore’s. M Ravi is confident that the sharing of his knowledge and experience of mounting the challenge against the mandatory death penalty case here will be instrumental in overcoming the odds there.

“Legal submissions filed in Singapore courts , research support on Privy Council cases and recent case law developments in the commonwealth , particular points of law raised by the Singapore Court of Appeal during the course of hearing in the case of Yong Vui Kong will be relevant to address the more nuanced legal position regarding the mandatory death sentence before the Tanzanian Court,” he said.

Ravi added that the Tanzanian legal team is not challenging the death penalty per se but is challenging the mandatory nature of the death penalty that does not allow judges to hear mitigating factors after a person is convicted of murder.

M Ravi mounted a series of constitutional challenges from 2009 to 2015 before the High Court and Court of Appeal on various aspects of the Mandatory Death Penalty regime including the powers of the court to grant stay of execution and to reopen capital cases ,presidential pardon process, limits of prosecutorial discretion in death penalty cases and the constitutionality of caning and right of access to counsel within reasonable time.

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