Saudi executioner requests career break to develop soft skills

After beheading 137 convicts this year, an exhausted Saudi employee has asked King Salman for a 2 month sabbatical to pursue developing his soft skills. 43 year-old Omar Al-Salhi, a master swordsman who can also handle a wooden cane, was recognised by the House of Saud as a 'key talent' when deftly flogging a human rights advocate in 2014. He was quickly promoted to become the Kingdom's lead executioner after a recent increase in the number of blasphemers and witches across Saudi Arabia. His request for extended leave follows 20 years of loyal service in various roles such as stoning adulterous women and lashing homosexuals.

"I'm hugely overworked and worry about the direction of my career sometimes", Omar began in his first public interview. "My expertise at inflicting punishment or death has become too job-specific and my CV is in danger of becoming pigeonholed", he continued. "Amputation, for example, is no longer a specialised skill. I need time to work on the softer competencies of communication, problem-solving and leadership so that I have more opportunities in the future - perhaps to even run a bakery one day."

King Salman is thought to be privately concerned over a growing number of staff absences through sickness and fatigue. Some executioners have even left the Arab state to join ISIS, not because they have been radicalised, but due to a lower rate of daily beheadings and more generous annual leave entitlements. Others have complained to authorities that decapitation should be carried out by machines to free up resources for other methods of corporal punishment.

"I wish the convicts understood how I felt prior to their brutal execution", Omar concluded. "But they never show me any compassion. They just kneel there, heads down with not a care in the world."

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