Shafqat Hussain deserves a fair trial: Sherry Rehman

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March 14, 2015 ISLAMABAD: Vice President PPPP Sherry Rehman on Saturday called for an urgent halt to the Thursday execution of Shafqat Hussain and asked that he be given a fair re-trial as had been promised by the government.

Asking for justice for the boy who was 14 years old when he was sentenced, Rehman said, “The criminal justice system of our country does not allow the death penalty for juveniles, and rightly so.”

“It is imperative that this case goes to trial again, if only for the reason that he was promised a fair one and deserves it under our law. We should not let our justice system be subverted.”

“Right to fair trial has been recognized as a fundamental right under Article 10-A in the 18th amendment” she said adding also “denying Shafqat the right to be tried under laws meant for trial of juveniles at the time amounts to a denial of fair trial”.

Hussain, who was sentenced to death for murdering a child, was only 14 at the time of the event. The FIR lodged at the time of the incident wrongly stated that he was 24.

He has been in jail for 16 years now, where he has been allegedly tortured multiple times. His confession as well as his retraction places the whole case under question, and a speedy execution will neither serve justice nor our value system.

Rehman appealed to Interior Ministry, Chaudhry Nisar, who a few months ago in public statements, had promised an inquiry into the case, to give his personal attention to this case.

Hussain is sentenced to be hanged on March 19. Rehman said the PPP cannot stand silent where such a travesty of justice is playing out for the children of Pakistan.

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