NTU's student publication, The Tribune, carried in its front page of its March issue a heart-wrenching article on Yong Vui Kong, a teen drug runner who was sentenced to death for trafficking 47g of heroin into Singapore.
Specifically, it drove to the crux of the case, the mandatory death sentence which was the required punishment for convicted drug traffickers under Singapore law.
The Tribune, in its article wrote, "The core of Mr Yong's lawyer's appeal - the basic right to life. Singapore's mandatory death penalty for possession of drugs always makes for heated discussion. Lawyers argue that it fails to deal with the right to life and evolve in the context of international laws."
The Tribune then asks NTU students a thought provoking question, "Is it time for change?"
In raising awareness amongst students, The Tribune has done NTU's student body a great service by providing students a refreshing alternative view, and encouraging them to form an informed opinion on capital punishment in Singapore.
Whether one is for or against the mandatory death penalty, tertiary institutions should be a place where opinions on the issue are debated.
Is capital punishment a form of deterrence? What are the statistics of executed drug traffickers in Singapore since the 1970's? What are the possible alternative punishments for the drug trafficker?
These are just some of the questions that can come up in a tertiary-level debate or discussion group that the respective tertiary institution's Student Unions can consider organising.
sgdeathpenalty also urge other tertiary publications to take up the challenge of encouraging a more critical-thinking student population through raising awareness on various social and political issues.
The mandatory death penalty is one of those issues that require urgent attention.
In most part of the world, tertiary institutions have always had the buzz of independent student activity that entails the coming together of the top young minds of the country.
Being part of a cosmopolitan and economically advanced nation, Singapore's educational institutions should be no different.