View from a Rhino House: a drop in employment numbers

The government in Sri Lanka is searching for a new hangman after the latest hire got upset on seeing the gallows for the first time & resigned, a spokesman said yesterday.

The Prisons Department appointed the new hangman, the third choice from over 150 applicants, last week, three months after the last of the 2 hangmen chosen late last year failed to turn-up.

“We gave him a week’s training, but he resigned the moment he actually saw the gallows, saying that he didn’t want the job,” Chandrarathna Pallegama, Commissioner General of prisons, said.

“He told me that after seeing the gallows he got distressed. Next time, we’ll show the gallows to the new recruits before giving them basic training.” (Maybe a better idea would be to show it to them before the interview?)

It’s not as if he would have had to to hang anyone anyway. The job is only administrative, since Sri Lanka, a largely Buddhist country, has not carried out an execution since 1976 (although there are over 400 convicts technically awaiting the drop).

Increased levels of violent & drug-related crime since the war against Tamil Tiger separatists ended in 2009 has driven some lawyers & politicians to call for the death penalty to be reintroduced, but there seems little appetite in the country as a whole to start killing people again after 25 years of civil war finally ended.

Sensible people in Sri Lanka.

"Let's try & find a Boy Scout next time; at least they know how to knot a rope...."

“Let’s try & find a Boy Scout next time; at least they know how to knot a rope….”

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