PARLIAMENT has repealed the death penalty with Prime Minister James Marape saying the “adjustment of the Section 614 of the Criminal Code Act was proper and was associating the offences with longer terms to be served.”
The penalties for offences that used to carry the death penalty have now been changed to life imprisonment and life imprisonment with parole. The offences are treason, punishment for piracy and attempted piracy with personal violence, wilful murder, wilful murder of a person on account of sorcery, aggravated rape and robbery with violence.
Justice Minister Bryan Kramer, when presenting the amendment, told Parliament that one of the main reasons for the country’s inability to implement the death penalty was the lack of necessary administrative mechanisms and infrastructure.
“This was largely attributed to the difficulty presented by a single method of implementation and administration of the death penalty in the past which was to be done by hanging,” Kramer said.
“It’s in view of this, that the Government amended Section 614 of the Criminal Code Act which was intended to give greater flexibility and capability to enable the State to implement the death penalty.
“It provided a range of methods of execution of the death penalty for the Government to choose from depending on the Government’s preparedness and availability of administrative mechanisms and infrastructure suitable to that particular method of execution.”
Death penalty and offences and punishment under the amendment:
- SECTION 37 treason – life imprisonment no parole;
- SECTION 81 punishment for piracy – life imprisonment, parole after 30 years;
- SECTION 82 attempted piracy with personal violence – life imprisonment, parole after 30 years;
- SECTION 229 wilful murder – life imprisonment, no parole;
- SECTION 299A wilful murder of a person on account of sorcery – life imprisonment, parole after 30 years;
- SECTION 347C aggravated rape – life imprisonment no parole; and,
- SECTION 386 robbery with violence – life imprisonment, parole after 30 years.