Tag Archives: ICA

STRING OF LAPSES BY THE HOME TEAM

wongks

The recent shooting incident at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital where 3 shots were fired exposed the complacency of the police officers involved. The New Paper reported last Monday that one of the escort police officers had left the private holding  room when the shooting occurred. The same report interviewed former police officer Joseph Tan who shared that “Two officers  must be present” while holding custody of a suspect.

Even though I pity the injured police officer, I still think there was an operational lapse in the KTPH shooting  incident.

The Home Team is not unfamiliar with these high profile incidents. A gold-coloured Mercedes breached Woodlands ICA checkpoint in March 2014 that escalated into an island-wide hunt for the perpetrator. The incident was also marred by a leaked security footage from the ICA control room that showed the process of the breach. That video went viral and some netizens questioned the integrity of ICA officers who were supposed to safeguard privileged information under their care. No further updates were released over the leak of the footage.

The public might remember that in January 2014, a mentally unsound Malaysian woman trespassed into MFA building after she slipped through the ICA checkpoints by tailgating other vehicles. Despite island wide warnings, police officers failed to notice her or her vehicle.

The competency of the Home Team was questioned again in September 2014 when Adam Christopher Whittington sneaked into
Singapore illegally without clearance via an unsecured Raffles Marina Pier where there were no ICA officers on duty.

Even the life-saving force SCDF got embroiled in controversy when a group of unruly specialist trainees in Civil Defence  Academy were caught on tape smoking and destroyed properties that belonged to SCDF.

The only home team agency that probably deserves public praise is CNB, the nation’s anti-narcotics agency. Looking through
its public statements , the CNB could praise itself for completing 2-3 successful raids each month on average! But its success on the public front is a stark indicator of its failed anti-drug public campaign and the failure of other enforcement agencies which failed to stem the inflow of drugs and its usage within the underworld.

If these lapses happened due to low pay and long working hours that the ground officers have to go through daily, then the public should question out-of-touch home team scholars who are more eager to please their higher-up for personal glory and go through the motion of their 2-year tour without any regard for the consequences of the policies they put up. These parachutists are a bunch of protected breed with guaranteed career path who are insulated from the reality faced by the ground officers.

I wonder if elitism is the cause of Home Team’s lapses?

Did the deputy public prosecutor even appeal?

According to Channel News Asia , three foreigners hatched an elaborate plan – enter Singapore in style illegally, abduct a child then leave Singapore. Diapers and passport for the abductee were prepared.

They entered Singapore without clearance in a catamaran and docked at Raffles Marina Pier. Its shockingly lax security clearance is only available from 9am to 5pm.

Adam Christopher Whittington was jailed 16 weeks, Todd Allan Wilson and the child’s mother was jailed 10 weeks each.

Whittington, who holds British and Australian passport is the director of NGO Child Abduction Recovery International, an organisation that specialises in recovering abducted children  and he has extensive military & law enforcement experience.

Photo of Adam Christopher Whittington From Facebook

[Photo of Whittington, from Child Abduction Recovery International Facebook page ]


[Photo: Allsingaporestuff.com]

I am sure many commoners such as myself who are not trained in law are  surprised that Whittington and Wilson have seemingly managed to escape lightly considering the severity of the offences .

Perhaps the security lapse at Raffles Marina Pier is a factor that contributed to the (light) sentences because the state has a role to play in the breach? Or because the state do not want to deal with another cane-an-angmoh since it now involves a British national?

Our local press seems to be very subdued in their reporting of the case as well.

[Photo: http://anyhowhantam.blogspot.com/ ] Singapore’s famous human rights lawyer M Ravi has argued that caning is inhumane. In this photo, M Ravi was seen with with a team of foreign lawyers

So many unanswered questions but who dares to press for answers?