Writing in tears, a letter from the wife of prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao

Ngo Thi Kim Lan – wife of prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao

[themify_box style=”blue info rounded” ]Near the end of the meeting, my husband bursted into tears. It is beyond the endurance of a wife like me and of my children. He said in tears: “When I close my eyes I imagine the K3, a burial place of prisoners those who lost their lives in prison.” And he told us that he has repeatedly thought of committing suicide. My heart ached. A painful and panic feeling gripped my brain. What have they done to my husband, an uneasily subdued person, to make him cry and display the panic like that?While sitting to write this letter, I still do not want to remember the image of my husband at that moment. My children, though proved to be very tough, they could not hide their fears.[/themify_box]

Danlambao | May 29, 2014

Prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao.
Prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao.

Respectfully presented to International human rights organizations and the peace-loving Governments.

I am Nguyen Thi Kim Lan, wife of the prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao who is currently imprisoned in Xuan Phuoc prison, Dong Xuan district, Phu Yen province.

My husband was arrested on February 8, 2013, and sentenced to 15 years in prison for allegedly violating article 79 of the Criminal Code of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. He was convicted for engaging in “activities aimed at overthrowing the people’s administration.” In fact, he peacefully advocates for human rights, democracy and territorial integrity.

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen, 

I am writing this letter in tears, physical pains and mental torment. I do not know how many more times I will be able to visit my husband and whether I will have another chance to write you the next letter. My throat cancer is in the final stages and it can bring me depart from this world at any time. But I only feel sorrow for my husband, Mr. Ngo Hao, who has not finished serving 2 years out of the harsh 15-year prison sentence. My two sons Ngo Minh Tam and Ngo Minh Tri are still at school. They always have to face with public opinion and the pressure from school, society and the neighborhood for being the sons of Ngo Hao, a man regarded by the authorities as “reactionary.” It will certainly be difficult for them to find job in the future. People usually look forwards to the future, to the coming days, but I just wish that the time would stand still. So I will have a chance to meet my husband and live little longer with my sons.

Therefore, regardless how difficult it is, three of us are trying to visit my husband once a month. After each visit we thirst for the next one.

Recently, on May 25, Ngo Minh Tam and I made a visit to see him.

The evening before, a guest came to my house when I was preparing foods for my husband. The sudden visit of Pho, a provincial policeman, made me worried. At first, he asked general questions about our health, works, daily activities, and so on. But I knew those questions were not the main reasons for a provincial policeman to make a visit to our shabby house. Finally the words of courtesy must come to an end to make room for the main purpose of the visit: “If you go to visit your husband then remind him that he should not do anything that would cause him to face a prison transfer.”

That warning made me feel so nervous and insecure that I suspected something bad would have happened to my husband.

Early in the next morning, Tam and I prepared our belongings for the prison visit. After doing the paperwork, we had to wait over an hour before they escorted my husband out. I was stunned! Just in a month, my husband’s gray hairs completely turned silver and he could not walk steadily on his own feet. His haggard appearance sheds pains in our hearts. We must speak very loudly so that he could hear us. During the visit, three prison police monitored us. They took notes our conversation and also used a voice recorder to support their tasks. The husband, wife and son looked at one another, anxiety overwhelmed joys. Our son Minh Tri is working away from home to earn some money to help me; therefore, he could not visit his father that time and it made my husband very sad. My husband said that if it is too difficult then we should stop visiting him. My heart hurt when I heard him say so. If I do not visit him, I lose a chance to see my husband. I do not know how long I can live, but death is coming very close to me.

Dear Ladies and gentlemen,

My husband also told me that provincial police came to see him in prison. But he did not elaborate the meeting content. He just said that provincial police and prison officials told him to “advise” family members should not do anything for him to be transferred to another prison. We think that we live honestly and do not do anything wrong. What we have done is for bringing the goodness and legitimate rights for my husband. Furthermore, it is our responsibility for what we have done; why does my husband, who already gets a 15-year prison sentence, has to be responsible for our doings? This proves how enormous pressure my husband must suffer.

Near the end of the meeting, my husband bursted into tears. It is beyond the endurance of a wife like me and of my children. He said in tears: “When I close my eyes I imagine the K3, a burial place of prisoners those who lost their lives in prison.” And he told us that he has repeatedly thought of committing suicide. My heart ached. A painful and panic feeling gripped my brain. What have they done to my husband, an uneasily subdued person, to make him cry and display the panic like that?While sitting to write this letter, I still do not want to remember the image of my husband at that moment. My children, though proved to be very tough, they could not hide their fears.

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,

I cannot write more although I want really want to because I am too worried and frightened, and the pains are torturing me. And I understand, writing you this letter is also a “violation” to the warning from police that I “should not do” anything that would bring harms to my husband. But, ultimately, sending you the sincere sharing words of a dying person and a wife of a prisoner of conscience is absolutely necessary. It does not violate the laws and is not contrary to the conscience and moral. Moreover, the responsibility to speak out for the truth must be placed on top. Sacrifice for the truth, it is also my husband’s ideal, which has caused him misery in captivity. Thinking so, I boldly send this letter to you but I have to frankly admit that the fear and anxiety have always existed in me.

I write this letter with great hope that you will voice your support for my husband, who suffers imprisonment for advocating for human rights, justice and rightness. Even if he won’t be released in the near future, at least he should be treated humanely, and his dignity should be respected and protected by law.

Please accept my sincere thanks.

Phu Yen, May 28, 2014.

Nguyen Thi Kim Lan

Wife of prisoner of conscience Ngo Hao

Tel: +84 01226606052

Address: 17/ 6 Nguyen Trai Street, Ward 5, Tuy Hoa City, Phu Yen Province.

Translate by Như Ngọc (Danlambao)