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Pinoy's execution in Sabah suspended

MANILA, Philippines - Malaysian authorities have postponed the execution of a Filipino convicted of murder in Sabah in 2006, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said yesterday.

The DFA said the scheduled execution of Ejah bin Jaafar last Friday was ordered postponed by Sabah governor Juhar Mahiruddin following a last minute appeal from the Philippine embassy in Kuala Lumpur.

“We would like to thank the governor of Sabah for responding to the repeated appeals of the Philippine government on behalf of the family of Mr. Jaafar,” Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said.

Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia Charles Jose said the Sabah governor decided to refer Jaafar’s case back to the Sabah Pardons Board for review.

He said the embassy has been making appeals since 2015 for Malaysian authorities to spare the life of Jaafar and commute his sentence.

The Sabah Pardons Board will meet in December to review his case and decide whether to reduce the sentence to life imprisonment or proceed with the execution.

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The decision of the board will be final and executory, according to the DFA.

Jaafar was found guilty by the Sandakan High Court of murder in September 2006 and was meted the capital punishment in 2009. Details of the case were not available.

The Malaysian Court of Appeals and the Federal Court affirmed the conviction in 2011 and 2013, respectively.

The DFA said it has extended legal assistance in all stages of the trial and the embassy left no stone unturned to provide assistance to Jaafar, including regular prison visits. 

His family was also able to visit him through the assistance of the DFA.

“The department stands ready to provide any further assistance to Ejah bin Jaafar and his family,” Cayetano said.

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