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Posts Tagged ‘Well-Known Supporters’

More messages from the petition

Monday, September 28th, 2009

Thank you to the more than 2,600 who have put their names to our petition, including celebrated poet Lee Tzu Pheng. Signatory Jean Goh observes:

I have heard of friends who have been through many bouts of non-consensual sex with their husband and it was not pleasant for them at all. I believe that this is not to be taken lightly because these victims have nowhere to go for help, especially since the ones harming them are the same ones who have vowed before God to protect them and treat them well. I’ve heard that sex keeps the love alive in marriage, but I don’t think it even works if the man disregards the thoughts and feelings of his wife.

In the week since it was launched, our latest film ad has been watched more than 1,400 times on YouTube. Please continue to spread the word, to help our videos and the campaign reach an even wider audience.

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AWARE hosts No To Rape opinion piece

Monday, September 14th, 2009

The Association of Women for Action and Research (AWARE), which endorses No To Rape, has very kindly published a short opinion piece on marital immunity for rape penned by Jolene Tan, a core member of the No To Rape team. Do check it out!

p.s. Don’t forget to tune in to Channel News Asia today, at 8.30pm, to catch an episode of Get Rea! focusing on marital rape. If you can’t make it, don’t fret – there will be repeat broadcasts later this week.

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President of SAC signs No To Rape petition

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

No To Rape is pleased to note that David Blakely, marriage counsellor and President of the Singapore Association for Counselling, has signed the Petition, with the following statement:

As a marriage counsellor living in Singapore for the past 14 years, in my voluntary role as the President of the Singapore Association for Counselling, and as a father to two teenage daughters I believe it is important for us to give full legal protection by eliminating any and all immunities to the charge of marital rape. I’m confident that our justice system has the appropriate structures to prevent abuse of such a change.

We are very grateful for this kind support for the total abolition of marital immunity for rape.

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Rolling onward

Monday, August 24th, 2009

Today the campaign enters an important week. Wednesday, 26 August, is the 10th anniversary of the hearing of Public Prosecutor v N, the landmark case where a man gagged, tied up and forced sex upon his wife but could not be charged for rape – to the surprise, according to then-prosecutor Mr Wang, even of then-Chief Justice Yong Pung How. Ten years later, despite the 2007 Penal Code Review, the result in the case would be the same. Even in cases of clearcut evidence of non-consent, the law denies that someone who forcibly penetrates his wife is a rapist.

Thank you to the more than 2,300 of you who have signed our petition to express your determination that this must change. We are pleased and grateful to note that recent notable signatories include Dr Kenneth Paul Tan of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, Professor Chua Beng Huat of the NUS Sociology Department and Professor Kumaralingam Amirthalingam of the NUS Law Faculty. Let’s keep the signatures coming!

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More on PP v N

Sunday, August 16th, 2009

You may have seen that No To Rape has been featured in the Straits Times again. Thank you once again to all the volunteers and supporters who have helped to make this campaign newsworthy. Your efforts mean that the No To Rape message can reach a wider group of people.

Interestingly, blogger Mr Wang has picked up the story (we are grateful for the link!), and it emerges that he was the prosecutor in the landmark marital rape case of PP v N (we posted the facts previously but the link is malfunctioning slightly – click on the ‘Legal’ tag on the right and you can read them). Mr Wang describes his experience in the High Court:

The prosecution appealed for a higher sentence. I took the case to the High Court. There I presented to the Chief Justice various arguments for a heavier sentence.

I still remember the first question that Yong Pung How had asked in court. He asked, “Why wasn’t this man charged for rape?”

Yong didn’t know that the prosecution couldn’t do that. He looked slightly stunned, when I pointed him to the relevant immunity provision in the Penal Code. At first sight, Yong’s ignorance of that point was very surprising (you would expect the Chief Justice to know better). However, on further reflection, Yong’s ignorance was not that surprising.

Why? Well, as Chief Justice, Yong had heard hundreds, perhaps thousands of criminal cases. So he knew a lot about criminal law. But Yong had never heard a single case where a husband had been charged for raping his wife. And that, of course, was because the law did not even allow the prosecution to charge any husband for such an offence.

Anyway, the Chief Justice increased the sentence for N. He brought the overall sentence close to the maximum possible, for the charges of “criminal intimidation” and “voluntarily causing hurt”. If I recall correctly, it added up to a few years’ imprisonment. This was a big improvement over the original sentence, but it was still a lot lower than what it would have been, for a bona fide rape charge. Even the Chief Justice is constrained by the words in the Penal Code, you see.

It may be worth referring to the words of then-Chief Justice Yong in the case, which reflect the principles that rape is a form of sexual violence and that violence committed against one’s spouse is no less severe than violence against a stranger. Both these principles support the total abolition of marital immunity for rape. We have added emphasis to the relevant language.

Click here for more

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Standing together

Saturday, August 15th, 2009

As the number of signatures on the petition nears 2,000, we would like to highlight another notable message of support. Signatory Bay Ming Ching leaves an eloquent and succinct statement:

The wedding ring is not supposed to be the world’s tiniest handcuff, rendering the one party to suffer at the hands of their spouses in silence. Action has to be taken to ensure there are laws protecting married individuals from the abuse of their spouses.

No To Rape is also pleased to note more familiar names among the signatories, including Dr Kanlwaljit Soin, orthopaedic surgeon, former NMP and former President of AWARE; actors Pamela Oei and Timothy Nga; Dr Gwee Li Sui of NUS; former President of AWARE Tan Joo Hymn; and architect and writer Dinesh Naidu.

Thank you to each and every person who has signed the petition. Please continue to speak up and spread the word. Together, we can build an even stronger show of support.

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Anita Kapoor to moderate No To Rape Seminar

Tuesday, August 4th, 2009

No To Rape is very pleased to announce that our public seminar on 7 August, Towards Criminalising Marital Rape, will be moderated by the campaign’s celebrity ambassador, Anita Kapoor. She will facilitate what we expect to be an insightful and informative discussion on the issues raised by the call to abolish marital immunity for rape. If you want to find out more or have any questions – about experiences of marital rape, about the legal nuances of the subject, and about how we can make this reform a reality – this is a unique opportunity to speak to those in the know. More details, and a registration form, can be found here.

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AWARE supports No To Rape

Monday, July 27th, 2009

We are pleased to let you know that AWARE has announced its support of No To Rape. AWARE has worked for many years on promoting gender equality in Singapore, and we are very grateful for their endorsement.

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Bringing people together

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009

To those who have signed the petition, our warmest thanks. We are pleased to note that in your ranks are Benny Bong (President of the Society Against Family Violence), writer Yong Shu Hoong, national swimmer Thum Ping Tjin and Associate Professor Paul Ananth Tambyah of NUS. We’re really pleased that so many different people have come together to show support for this cause.

Every single signatory brings us closer to abolishing marital immunity for rape. We now stand at over 1,300 in just a few short weeks – but there’s still some distance to go. Please tell a friend about No To Rape today.

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Thank you to MARUAH Singapore

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2009

No To Rape is very grateful to MARUAH Singapore, the Singapore working group for an ASEAN human rights mechanism, for supporting the repeal of marital immunity for rape. On its website, MARUAH Singapore states:

MARUAH (Singapore Working Group for an ASEAN Human Rights Mechanism) would like to extend its fullest support to the ongoing petition to protect spouses against marital rape.

Raping one’s spouse is an act of violence that is in gross violation of his or her human rights. Marriage should not grant one the ability to abuse one’s spouse through non-consensual sexual activity.

As we’ve just discussed, this petition is about the right to protection from violence – one of the most basic and universally agreed rights ever articulated. There can be only the most limited justifications for violence done by one citizen to another – self-defence, for instance. And there can be no justification for rape.

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