Friday, February 01, 2013

Please Don't Vandalise - PhotoHunt

PhotoHunt theme :  Daub/Looking out of my window

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One night,  a group of 30+ youths (ages above 18) gathered at the garden below my apartment to celebrate the Lantern Festival and a guy's 21st birthday. They sang, played games, lighted lanterns and sparklers beyond 10 pm. The residents tolerated the ruckus until they started to make bonfires. Looking out of my window, I saw 3 bonfires.

A large group of diners at the nearby eatery watched but didn't stop them.

Concerned, I took photos first before rushing downstairs, requesting them to put out the fires. It was 10.18 pm. They resisted, jeered and taunted me. I took their photo with my mobile phone. When the group advanced towards me, I promptly called the Police. It was 10.22pm.

My son and husband came to my aid and brought along a camera. When the youths saw the camera and more residents coming to help, they started to pack up.

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Two of them in their twenties approached me and apologised. They said they would leave and clean up. I accepted their apology, made sure the fires were completely extinguished and was able to return home at 10.54 pm.

The next day, I saw the cleaners carefully daubing the blackened stone work flooring with detergent so as not to damage it further.

It was extremely frightening coming face to face with a large group of raging youths by myself but somebody has to stop them before things get out of control.

All throughout my ordeal, the police didn't appear nor contact me to follow up. As usual, the lackadaisical Marine Parade Neighbourhood Police and Bedok Police Divisional HQ are reluctant to act.

Who do we call when such acts of vandalism happens?

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This garden usually sees quite a fair number of youths from the church across the street or students from nearby schools gather here on weekend evenings to have fun. We have to tolerate the noise until they leave which could be well after midnight. During our National Day, a group of them stayed beyond 3 am. Also there is much rubbish for the cleaners to clear the next day.

I informed the relevant authorities and gave feedback to my Member of Parliament ESM Goh Chok Tong, it has been peaceful ....... probably just for the time being.





42 comments:

  1. Oh dear... no police turned up after your call?

    Well, at least there were nice youths who did apologise.

    I do think the youths can do this because no one will bother to raise up the matter (advising them or reporting them). Instead most will just grumble and yet sit still. :(

    You are one brave woman ECL! Take care!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope, the police didn't turn up despite my telling them there were more than 30 youths standing in front of me.

      They were from a nearby church, didn't expect them to be so rowdy and inconsiderate.

      I tolerate the ruckus for two hours until they made the bonfires. There were so many adults at a coffee shop nearby but they just ignored these people. They didn't even bother to call the police. OK, they know the police doesn't care too. -_-

      One day I am going to get killed for standing up for justice. :D

      Delete
    2. The scary part will be, will there anyone who witness if you being attacked, help at all?

      Apathy can be a danger too. :(

      Delete
    3. Since the bystanders did not report the vandalism act nor come forward to help me, I doubt they would bother to be witnesses if I am attacked.

      Yeah, scary scenario. *shudders*

      Should I just mind my own business next time and let Singapore burn?

      Delete
  2. Wow that is scary! Especially scary that police were not willing or able to help, the situation could become very dangerous. Like you said who could you call for help if not police?!

    my photo hunters blog entry

    Happy weekend ECL!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Scary indeed.

      When the police relations guy called many days after the incident, his explanation was it was Lantern Festival, many places in Singapore were celebrating it and it was not usual for people to lit fires that night.

      I was stunned at his incredible excuse.

      Hello, when I made the call to the police, I told them "3 bonfires" and I emphasized I was facing 30+ raging youths'.

      The police didn't even bother to send two men to investigate when we have a police post less than 200m away. Appalled and disgusted.

      Delete
  3. I would prefer that you NOT be killed for standing up, but this is what this world is. I feel bad that it was a group from a church, but it is better to face them (because they might fear other consiquenses). On the other hand talking to the church leaders might be effective in reducing the issue. As far as the police - sometimes it works and other times it doesnot, even here in this country (surprise, surprise!). Stay well, find the correct battles to fight and be strong in each one!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. haha.... it seems the common folks who wish NOT be hurt or killed for standing up is a fantasy these days.

      Our police, legal professionals, politicians, civil servants are too complacent and comfortable with their huge income that they have lost their mission to protect those who are vulnerable.

      The church leaders will have to figure out where they have gone wrong when their youths do such things in public.

      Yes, I have to pick the correct battles to fight or else I might die over trivial matters. :P

      Delete
  4. I would have thought that since there is zero crime in Singapore the police would be there in a snap, after all what else do they do?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is not true there is zero crime in Singapore. Our police work smart. There are many types of crimes they classify as non-seizable and close case.

      I have made several police reports and one as serious as a drunken driver who rammed into a car and then tried to run down the innocent passenger when he tried to stop them from leaving.

      The police post was less than 300m across the road yet it took them 40 mins to arrive after several calls and even after I ran to the police post to hurry them. Two police officers at the police post said, "Since you have made a 999 report, wait at the accident scene for the police to arrive".

      Delete
  5. It sure amazing how the word “daub”will be use. Depends where you live. I know it as a cooking term...someone who don't measure there ingredients.
    The one I know is a “dauber” which is use to mark a bingo sheet.

    Not sure how the law enforcement would act around here to situation like that. Later on in year the bon fire would have complete different reaction...the wood or dry and could start a forest fire.

    Coffee is on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I only know that 'daub' means apply a liquid to a hard surface. Didn't know there are several definitions. :P

      I have seen how forest fires or bonfires destroy homes and the lives of families in Australia and the USA on TV news.

      It is not ok for the youths to tell me they know what they are doing and they have control. If they know what they are doing, they would not have started fires in a public place in the first place. When a fire goes out of control, there is little the humans can do.

      Delete
  6. Guess some youths just want to have fun... but need to find a space where their fun doesn't infringe on other peoples' peace, sleep, etc.!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Correct.

      Everyone wants to have fun. If those who want to have fun, go around doing whatever they like, the law-abiding citizens will suffer.

      Delete
  7. Bananaz salute your guts. Lucky nothing bad happened. You gave us some consolation thinking not only our Federal police have this lackadaisical attitude but Spore as well. The other day called the police station which is only 5 minutes drive away by phone to report some guys opposite our apartment were having a party making hell lot of noises, talking, laughing, singing and drinking at their house compound till almost 3am. Well you know the answer..no show. My other friend at the lower unit also make a call to police too. An hour later they finished all the nonsense and dispersed. People can be so very inconsiderate pity their neighbors on the right and the left. Probably their rooms are with air-con so they can't hear anything.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a disgrace to Singapore that other nationalities think so highly of our police when in fact the citizens are constantly complaining about their lackadaisical attitude which did not get reported in the mainstream media.

      Fortunately my neighbours are considerate. Many of them are retirees,
      it can be too quiet at times.

      Delete
  8. Bonfires can be nice but not in a crowded city, far too dangerous !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, too dangerous and there were young children playing in a playground nearby. Seeing that adults were making fires in a public place, they might follow suit.

      Delete
  9. That would be scary! Thank goodness they were able to daub the surface clean again.

    Have a great weekend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Fortunately, there was little damage as I stopped them as soon as I could.

      Delete
  10. that's a scary encounter. the inaction of the police is frustrating. it's a good thing the group didn't go further than that melee.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The police in my constituency are too laid back. We need a resident to be seriously injured before they will take action.

      Delete
  11. You are one brave lady!

    And I thought taht only the Mumbai police were laid back. Sad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sad indeed. The Singapore police are not as efficient as they portray themselves to be.

      Delete
  12. Quite a shocking thing to see from your window, but well done on setting things right. I don't know that I would have been so brave.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not a thing most people would do. One is likely to get hurt standing up to the vandals.

      Delete
  13. Wow...that was indeed scary! We're glad that a few of them came up and apologized. Perhaps they'll think twice in future about vandalism? One can hope!

    We like how you worked the photohunt word in - daub.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The leaders of the group probably realised the seriousness of it after hearing me call the police. They are church members bringing some youths on an outing, it did not look good that they are breaking the law.

      Delete
  14. Puxa vida, imagens cercada de história...ainda bem que os jovens se acalmaram e tudo acabou bem. UM abraço!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Translation : Gee, images surrounded by history ... even though young people calmed down and everything went well. A hug!

      Sorry, not sure what you mean.

      Delete
  15. Hi ECL,
    That is a honorable thing that you have done and thanks for it. The police didn't turn up or act when you called? I did experienced a similar incident when i called them. A small truck was parked at the road junction leading to a HDB car park in a pasar malam fair. It is a road hazard to all road users, especially young school children trying to cross it.I called the neighborhood police for assistance. This sergeant asked many questions more about me than the subject matter reported on. What I did was I identified this police sergeant and warn him that if he didn't turn up to remove the road hazard, he will be responsible for any outcome from the road accident. I also told him that I will report it to my mp. They turn up within less than 3 minutes and the road hazard was removed immediately. Try this approach. It saves time and lives.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The police did not even bother to call me back to check if I am alright after the incident. The officer on duty took down my particulars.

      I have feedback to ESM Goh Chok Tong and I want explanations, accountability and assurance that the vulnerable community will not have to face such situations by themselves.

      I will have to ask for the name of the officer who took my call that night then.

      Delete
  16. wah, i admire your guts but luckily you were not hurt in the incident.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Now I wish the youths had turned ugly so the police would be held responsible for not responding to a call for help. :P

      Delete
    2. Please do not wish that that youths had turned ugly. It is not beneficial for all parties.
      You can track down the police officer who took your call. You call is recorded and it can be traced. Police also maintain a log. If energy permit, you can track the duty officer or get a policeman to do it if you file a complain. They will follow up diligently. It is not so much for punishment sake or they are responsible if anything happen to your safety, but they have a duty to serve. Our policemen are also normal citizens, just that they are paid with your contribution thorough taxes. No one is above the LAW!
      You can wait long long if ESM could get back to you. Otherwise pay him another visit. Remember, You are the Master and whoever you voted the person in, is your servant. This is the new normal.
      I rather that you do it yourself (if your energy permits) than waiting and hoping for ESM to response. Good luck :))

      Delete
    3. ESM Goh has replied. :)

      SPF Feedback Unit replied to say my complaint to ESM Goh has been referred to Bedok Police Division. Ball is in their court.

      Delete

Thank You for visiting my blog and brightening my day with your comments. I try to always respond to your comments - but there will be times when I cannot answer them all. See you again...

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