09:38:43 am on December 15, 2006 |
By HANIF MOHSEIN BIN MOHD. FAUZI
‘Behind Bars’ is one of the programme organised by Law Students’ Society of Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws, International Islamic University Malaysia in conjunction with AIKOL Festival 2006.
This programme was organised in collaboration with Jabatan Penjara Malaysia, Ahmad Ibrahim Kulliyyah of Laws and Harun M. Hashim Law Centre. I’m very lucky to be selected as one of the participant for this programme and what is more interesting was I have been selected to undergo ‘death penalty’ for the offence that I have committed i.e drug trafficking under Section 39 B (1) (a) Akta Dadah Berbahaya.
We have been instructed by the organizing committee to gather at the IIUM Main Grand Stair Case at 11 pm and I was among the earlier to reach there. After some short briefing, we departed from IIUM at about 12.20 am and stopped at R&R Machap at 4.30 am for some rest and performing Subuh prayer.
Then our journey as prisoner continued and we arrived at Dataran Bandaraya Johor Bahru at about 8.15 am and by the time we reached there, officers from Jabatan Penjara Malaysia have already prepared to handcuff us.
Then, we were put into Black Maria. 35 of the brothers were put together. After reaching Penjara Ayer Molek, we have been instructed to be queue one line in pairs before we were allowed to get in. One of the officer has read the crime that we have committed and the punishment and I was very surprised to know that I have committed a crime under Akta Dadah Berbahaya i.e. drug trafficking and the punishment was sentence to death by hanging. My friend, Azam also has been sentenced to death for the same offence. We were isolated from other prisoners.
On the positive side, we were the first to undergo the process of registration and medical check-up. Surprisingly, my blood pressure for that day was 160/100 and the MA gave me some medicine to avoid me from being collapsed.
The most tedious part was to wait other prisoners to finish their registration and medical check-up. At the same time, we changed our clothes to the white uniform and all of our belongings were confiscated by the prison officers. As for the ‘death row’ prisoner, we were equipped by bed sheet and this made other prisoner so jealous with us. After all the process finished, we were allowed to get into our cell in this is the best and most awaited part for everybody. We were also allowed to have our lunch in our cell.
There were only 4 ‘death-row’ prisoners and were placed in the same building called ‘Rumah Akhir’ and my cell was cell no. 5. After performing my Zuhur, I had some rest until ‘Asar and after performing ‘Asar, we were asked to gather in front of ‘Bengkel Kayu’ for whipping demonstration. Whipping demonstration was conducted by Corporeal Zulkarnain. After that, we got into the ‘Bengkel Kayu’ to watch some short movie regarding the process and procedure of whipping and Tuan Mat Rasid Jahlil also explained to us few things.
As usual, ‘death-row’ prisoners were given priority to leave the hall first and I had my dinner in my cell but before that, I have been instructed by the officer to move to cell no. 2 because there was no electricity in cell no. 5. After performing Maghrib prayer together with ‘Isya, I heard the voices of my friends reciting selawat and zikr but I did not join them because I have not been instructed to do so.
At about 9.00 pm, I have been asked to leave my cell and headed for ‘Bengkel Kayu’ for sharing moment session. I felt very lucky to meet with two man who were the ex-prisoners and they shared their experiences on how was the life as prisoner during their time and what made them strong to face their new-life after being released from the prison. The sharing moment session finished at about 10.30pm and after that, I had my supper in the cell and went for sleep.
I have been woke up at about 5.30 am the next morning and have been instructed to perform Subuh prayer by using the small amount of water that I got in the mug. Again, I heard the voices of my friend preparing for their physical training and I was lonely in my cell. Luckily, Tuan Mat Rasid came to 4 of us, the ‘death-row’ prisoners for some heart-to-heart talk and we had a very good session with him.
After that session, I have been informed by the officer that there was somebody waiting for me and both of my hand being handcuffed because I need to follow the procedures to meet visitor. As what I have expected, my mother, Puan Ruzita Ismail was there as she having meeting in Johor Bahru came to the prison for the once in a life time experience as a ‘visitor’ of a ‘prisoner’.
I spent about 10 minutes with her with both of my hands being handcuffed. After that session, I was allowed to enter to the hall and Tuan Mat Rasid started the sharing moment session with number of prisoners. After that, Tuan Mat Rasid continued with a session with him and the subject matter of his power point presentation was the function of prison nowadays and the misconceptions of it.
Our programme was officially closed by Dr. Mohd. Iqbal Abdul Wahab, Deputy Dean, Student Affairs and then, we had lunch together wit the prison officers.