NA deputies have said the new law which would change the method of execution for death-row inmates could be unfeasible.
At a meeting on the issue on October 26, Deputy Dinh Xuan Thao, Director of the NA’s Legislative Research Institute stated that the new law on applying lethal injections instead of using firing squads which was scheduled to take effect last July, may be unenforceable due to a shortage of lethal drugs following a ban on the sale of such drugs by many countries.
An injection facility was built in central Nghe An Province, which was scheduled to be put into operation in June 2012.
“I propose we flexibly apply both kinds of execution in this situation,” Thao said. “In the longer term, we should minimize the death penalty and reduce them to life-sentences.”
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Law Committee Phan Trung Ly attributed the situation to the government’s agencies who hadn’t shown any sense of responsibility on this issue.
“It is likely that the government has wasted a lot of investment in building facilities and training staff to carry out this law,” Ly said, recalling that the ministries of Police and Health had shifted responsibility onto each other when they were asked to adopt the three kinds of drugs used.
“We need to re-examine the responsibilities of the agencies involved,” he noted. “Is this true that we cannot produce the drug in Vietnam?”
Reply to Ly’s question, Doctor Nguyen Minh Hong, Director of the Centre for Research and Application of Medical Breakthroughs confirmed that it was not difficult to produce the drugs in the country but the problem was that there has been no directive and instruction from any authorized agency to produce the drug.
Meanwhile, Ly said that it was odd to amend the law again and return to firing squads while the new law had yet to be carried out.”
Statistics show that the execution of more than 420 inmates has not been able to go ahead due to the drug shortage, which is putting more burdens on jails nation-wide.