Dissecting the MHA versus Han Hui Hui saga

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) have this afternoon (14th March 2017) issued an official statement dismissing all of activist Han Hui Hui’s “inhumane treatments” claims as “baseless”. [ CNA ]

In its statement, MHA said that Singapore Prison Service (SPS) have interviewed the officers involved and reviewed the closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage and documents on Ms Han’s custody.

Ms Han’s allegations

Ms Han had, on 23rd February alleged on her blog and in a Facebook post titled “Alone In Cell” that she and fellow female prisoners were treated inhumanely and harshly by the prison officers guarding the lockups at both the States and High Courts. [ LINK ]

Taking MHA’s statement at face value, it appears that Ms Han was lying and had “fabricated false and misleading accounts” in an attempt to “undermine the integrity of our law enforcement agencies”, but did she?

Maybe she did, maybe she told half-truths or maybe she was telling the truth?

In any case, lets try to dissect the saga from a neutral perspective, taking both the MHA’s statement (as reported by CNA) and Ms Han’s allegations at face value – solely for the purposes of discussion.

They say versus She Say

* The quotes are for easy reference and not actual words written.

1.

Ms Han alleged:

She was subjected to a “humiliating” strip search in front of “about ten female officers with male officers passing by at the gate”. There was a privacy screen but “(the authorities) simply put it there for show rather than really using it”.

MHA said:

She was not subjected to a strip search, but was instead searched by a female officer and had remained clothed for the entire duration.

Her allegation that male officers had walked past while she was being searched is also untrue as she was in the women’s wing of the lock-up, which is not accessible to male officers …a privacy screen is deployed when a search in progress.

According to MHA, CCTV footage has shown that Ms Han was not subjected to a strip search, so Ms Han had probably ‘cook’ that up a little or maybe she was referring to other female prisoners who were subjected to a strip search that she witnessed?

MHA said that a “privacy screen is deployed when a search in progress” (standard protocol), but was that screen deployed on the day in question?

Protocol also states that male officers are not allowed in the women’s wing of the lockup, but was the protocol breached on the day in question?

Why bother citing a protocol when it was suggested that it had not been adhered to? Were these allegations investigated and if so, why were the findings not included in the statement?

Note: Prison protocols also states that a prison guard cannot have any intimate contact with an inmate, but wasn’t one male prison guard convicted of soliciting sex from an inmate just last year?

2.

Ms Han alleged:

There was no tissue and soap provided in the prison, and prison officers would gather at the CCTV whenever a prisoner was using the toilet and mock them for being unable to clean themselves.

MHA said:

This was also untrue as toilet paper is made available to detainees.

Granted that toilet paper was made available and prisoners probably have to request for it, but confirm no soap since it was not mentioned in the statement, right?. Then Ms Han wasn’t fabricating about the “no soap”, right?

What about the alleged peeping and mocking? Did MHA avoided (or forgotten) the more disturbing allegations made by Ms Han, that of the prison officers watching the female prisoners relieve themselves via CCTVs and even joked about it. Isn’t that more serious than a missing roll of toilet paper? Female prison officers peep and mock female prisoners is alright?

3.

Ms Han alleged:

The basement lock-up was run by auxiliary police officers from Malaysia, who made disparaging remarks about Singaporeans including one comparing them to dogs.

MHA said:

This was “unfounded”. The team overseeing the lock-up consists of prisons officers supported by both Singaporean and Malaysian auxiliary police officers.

If one were to read Ms Han’s original post, she had acknowledged that there was a Singaporean, but suggested that most were from Malaysia. MHA refuted with “both Singaporean and Malaysian auxiliary police officers”, isn’t that what Ms Han had already acknowledged? A case of “taken out of context” to accuse Ms Han of making “unfounded” allegations?

Ms Han wrote: “Other than the first police officer at the high court who was a Singaporean, the rest were Malaysians.”

Ms Han was in custody with her movements restricted, wouldn’t it be fair statement if she had made the comments based only on what she had experienced and saw in the lockup? There could be another 100 Singaporean prison officers in the Court’s rest room, but can she see them?

On the doggy allegation, Ms Han specifically mentioned one presumably Malaysian prison officer who compared Singaporeans to “dogs”.

LIM KAH LAN then added “lap up the sky juice” and both Malaysians walked away, laughing loudly saying Singaporeans are dogs.

Why no statement on this, that corner conveniently no CCTVs?

4.

Ms Han alleged:

She was brought into solitary confinement at the High Court at 12.30pm, half an hour after lunchboxes were distributed. She was only given lunch at the State Court at 2.30pm.

MHA said:

Ms Han was provided with lunch during her temporary custody.

Seriously, is that the best talents at MHA can come up with? Ms Han did not dispute that in her post, she did acknowledged that she was given food, but it was late. English got problem or another case of “taken out of context” and selective rebuttal?

More serious allegations conveniently omitted?

MHA appears to be refuting trivialities instead of addressing the more serious allegations.

Some of which made by Ms Han were:

1. From my viewpoint, I could see that they were surfing the web, mostly facebooking (sic) while they were working.

Did MHA’s investigation address this? Were the prison officers allowed to surf the net during working hours?

2. Whenever someone pass motion, they started shouting and asked everyone to gather at the CCTV. The police will then mock how people wash themselves without any tissue and soap.

Surely footage from the CCTVs would have either confirm or deny this, why no clarification on this?

3. Since the water only come out when being pressed, they laughed at how the inmates were unable to clean their hands properly.

Ms Han had described in details what a holding cell looked like and the position of the supposed 1.7m tap. Did officers from the SPS or MHA visit the lockup to confirm if that was the case, i.e. taps so high making it very difficult for prisoners to even wash their arse and hands?

Is there any logical rationale for a tap to be 1.7m high?

4. The walls are filled with blood. It appears that people have either fought or tried to self-harm in prison. There were blood stains all over and the walls were scrubbed. Some paints were falling off and there were more layers of blood stains when seen closely.

Were the prisoners manhandled while in custody? Were the prisoners attempting suicide or were the prisoners fighting among themselves? Why the blood?

Ms Han most probably had exaggerated her ordeal while in lockup, but there are more pressing questions like those listed above which members of the public are more concerned with, rather than the selective trivialities addressed by the MHA.

What do you think?

.

P/S: Out of curiosity, who reviewed the CCTV footage, was it a female officer, a male officer or a team comprising of both male and female officers?

 

 

 

 

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38 Responses to “Dissecting the MHA versus Han Hui Hui saga”

  • PAP Liars and Frauds:

    Very very wrong things that are right.

    Thank the writer for exposing what frankly can be considered lies (well interpretation of which varies which side of the fence), again, by PAP servants.

    Another demonstration to counter the world’s ignorant view of PAP being squeaky clean.

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  • Bapak:

    Remember Dinesh?

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  • Bapak:

    You ask that fatty he will tell you no one die by anti-aircraft gun in North Korea. If you insist he will instructz his AGC to charge you with comtempt of his court.

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  • PAP Contempt of Citizens:

    Whatever for – strip search? To uncover concealed drugs? Contraband? Weapons? VX nerve poison?

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  • New Egg Yoke:

    This administration has consistently LIE without accountability so why would they stop now.

    Remember this administration is a tried and tested TOXIC model for many many crimes against the people.

    And what crime has Ms Han committed except FIGHTING for undeserved Sinkies and standing up to this corrupt administration.

    A BS nation waiting for its demise very soon. Godspeed!

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  • we sgs are gonners:

    HHH or a close confidante should speak to former detainees, get their inside stories too..(in confidence, of course)..
    if her story coincides with what the others experienced, then the story needs to be told, perhaps to A Human Rights entity in SG or an international org.
    I believe ms HHH.. why would she lie ? she’s not an English language expert or trained in law to twist n turn her words to be believed, so what we read is her simple but true version of what she experienced n witnessed.
    in sg you are guilty before proven innocent…wtf.
    even if the person is guilty no one should be treated as such.
    its akin to outraging their modesty,( whether male or female detainees).. and is’nt that a crime already?

    Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

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  • opposition dude:

    This is what is going to happen a few weeks or months from now.

    The lapdog newspaper will have a report from SPF that procedures are being amended/tightened/reviewed. After that another report or a few more will be published to address what has changed.

    Same issue for when Benjamin Lim committed suicide after the mata visited his school, we were only told SPF’s side of the story about police officers not in uniform which is to say not in dark blue vest with the hat or whatever it’s called. There was an allegation that they wore polo shirts with the word POLICE printed at the back. If these are not called uniforms then I don’t know what they are called.

    Just wait lah, when a statutory board gives you half hearted answers is when you know they are also covering something up.

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  • 'FINDINGS' OF 'INVESTIGATION':

    After an ownself-check-ownself ‘investigation’ by SPS, MHA came out with a statement of ‘findings’ that dismiss Ms Han’s allegations as “false and baseless”.

    The statement makes much ado about the trivialities, but doesn’t address the serious allegations – especially ironical, since the statement ends with a grand (but hollow-sounding motherhood) declaration that “it takes all allegations seriously and will investigate them thoroughly”
    .
    MHA’s statement silence/side-tracking on the serious allegations is of even more serious public concern.

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  • nizhemoshou:

    Agree MHA reply is full of std motherhood statements but short of answering the crux of the issues .

    Believe HHH allegations for the simple reason she has more to loose than to gain from making any false allegations. Now the poor unsatisfactory MHA reply only serve to reinforce this belief by those who think her allegations mus be true rather than false. . .

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  • LIONS:

    By their MISCONDUCT,the LAW RNFORCERS show their LAWLESSNESS instead?

    Is this what the MHA minister directs his law enforcers to do?
    If not,the PUBLIC DEMANDS AN INVESTIGATION N ITS ACCOMPANYING RECTIFICATIONS.

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  • Lye Khuen Way:

    The credibility of our coverment and it’s various agencies had been low and still sliding as day goes by.
    Rarely would I acknowledge that some brave and honest Civil Servants or his political masters are truthful and working for the people. Sad.

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  • reminder to the 70%:

    Malaysian Aux police in charge n calling sgs ‘dogs’..
    Just think..what kind of work ethics they possess?
    This is the kind of foreign trashes this sick gov brings in to work in sensitive areas of our country.
    The gov itself is sick!.

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  • RDB:

    They dare to do what robbers dare not in broad day light.

    They have always got what nick a a “Kon You” gait when they speak!

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  • N.Jungne:

    P/S: Out of curiosity, who reviewed the CCTV footage, was it a female officer, a male officer or a team comprising of both male and female officers?

    Response: Interesting, I think everybody is interested to know.

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  • Bapak:

    Remember AY? How he was straitjacketed without acccess to toilet?

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  • Expert:

    MHA is weak in its arguments. the misconduct inside prisons is a very difficult thing to prove.

    CCTV footage is not able to show much unless the specified even happens in front of the cctv. This is what we call “point of evidence” . It is specifically used to prove evidence. “point of evidence” cannot be used to disprove something

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  • ITE Only:

    Hahaha,

    According a friend collecting scraps who was previously mistakenly arrested, detained and thrown in one of the slammer cell at YCK police station HQ.

    There’s nothing inside the cell. No toilet paper no soap. Only one squatting type toilet bowl with a very low wall providing very limited privacy when one answering the big pee. However camera mounted at top of the cell probably can see everything ( even one shit ) . Small pee for guys quite certain everybody can see tua kee or suay kee !

    A pipe hole concealed in a wall infront and above the toilet bowl with a button underneath for one to pressed if need water to wash hands or drink when thirsty.

    As he’s released and set on bail in less than 18 hours, so there was no big pee therefore unsure can one request for toilet paper bo ?

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  • ITE Only:

    @ Since the water only come out when being pressed, they laughed at how the inmates were unable to clean their hands properly.

    Psychology tactics ? Break your dignity break your mind ?

    Do not let it cloud one’s judgement.

    Logically , after one shit. No paper, water and soap. Definitely unclean right. If they want to laugh, so be it. Switch places they will also be the same.

    No big deal.

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  • KNN:

    No toilet paper. You can request but they will fiack you off. You are expected to use the toilet flush & your hand to clean your arse.

    Our prison standard & also mental hospital standard are actually same as western standard back in 1950-1960. Many westerners today will be shocked at these standards & they will say human rights abuse. But for Singapore this is normal standard.

    ITE Only:
    March 15, 2017 at 2:21 pm

    As he’s released and set on bail in less than 18 hours, so there was no big pee therefore unsure can one request for toilet paper bo ?

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  • AnT:

    But when asked to view it, they will excuse it on grounds of ‘commercial sensitivities.’

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  • IGP Up North Must Be Laughing:

    Every Dog Has its Day!

    reminder to the 70%:
    Malaysian Aux police in charge n calling sgs ‘dogs’..
    Just think..what kind of work ethics they possess?
    This is the kind of foreign trashes this sick gov brings in to work in sensitive areas of our country.
    The gov itself is sick!.

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  • Show the Tapes...:

    Singaporeans will then know who is telling the truth.

    Tapes don’t lie, right?

    CJ, can we trust you to do it?

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  • ITE Only:

    @ No toilet paper. You can request but they will fiack you off.

    Heh ? Okay, Can we pay for tissue paper ? ( business as usual i guess )? .

    If not we will have to wipe on the wall or on the officer’s clothing when they come to fetch us ?

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  • tfvgybhunj:

    What we can do to help HHH and everyone is to donate money to them whenever they get sue for good reason and HHH must continue to speak up against injust in order to make the system change. For this EP of hers, MHA/prison at most will wayang to her and the public by pushing all the blames onto the low ranking officers and revamp the facilities.

    HHH must get overseas human rights media and organizations to support her. If not there is no way her actions will weight anything and the gov will just slam her hard.

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  • Tatman:

    Angry to see heartless and stupid dog-like Singaporeans still condemning the poor girl’s who spoke up for Singaporeans’ rights.

    https://www.facebook.com/ChannelNewsAsia/posts/10154436641292934

    https://www.facebook.com/allsgstuff/posts/2406886179452097

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  • KNN:

    Hahaha, as a former civil servant I can advise what will happen if you try the below:

    ITE Only:
    March 15, 2017 at 5:44 pm

    If not we will have to wipe on the wall or on the officer’s clothing when they come to fetch us ?

    1. Wipe your shit on the wall — vandalism of public property – punishment includes mandatory caning.

    2. Wipe on guard/staff clothing — officers will immediately slam you to the floor & arm twist + wrist twist into submission & handcuffed for “assault” on public officer.

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  • Banyak kerja:

    IGP Up North Must Be Laughing:
    Every Dog Has its Day!

    No lah bro.

    Royal Malaysian Police are too busy with the recent fatal accidents.

    Latest is a crazy Malaysian Chinese female driving her Gen 2 in the opposite direction,high on meth and booze in Penang, resulting in deaths. You can find the video online.

    This after a careless Malaysian Chinese female rammed into a group of cyclists in Johor last month with her Nissan sedan.

    Fanatical NGO Isma is already on their tail.

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  • uncivilized psycho torture:

    No toilet paper? It’s not only worse than Third World, it is psychological torture!

    Which affluent civilized country would deny you of such basic human need??

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  • C'est la vie:

    Utterly sick and tired of the endless BS from the Govt and its annexes.

    As far as this joke of a Govt is concerned, all of their detractors are liars or communists …….. or both !!!

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  • How she became citizen??:

    Undesirables like her ought to be stripped of her citizenship and deported.

    When Malaysian SIA Captain Ryan took on the company, LKY got rid of him. He lost his PR.

    Is it that easy to become a citizen here?

    We don’t need any troublemakers.

    Her style suits Malaysia.Here we prefer ‘compliant’ people.

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  • Just1more:

    Besides Ms Han’s incident, it was reported today that a 72 year old aunty was alleged to being hand and leg cuffed while in Police detention for minor offences. She apparently was not in her good mind and unable to think clearly. This is another negative image of the way police handle elderly. Weather it is proven true or not, police must recognize the aging population and amend some of its law to match reality. In my circle of friends I knew several aging parents who are diagnosed as suffering from dementia. These uncles and aunties will have no idea what they have done and why they did that. It is really no point treating them as criminal and try to squeeze out any confession from them.

    A friend’s father was in such a classic case. Being diagnosed as early dementia, the family allowed him to move about in their estate. He would ordered coffee and snack but usually would forget what he had eaten and order again until he has no more money left. One day, he just helped himself to the cigarette and took a pack off the shelf. When confronted, he punched the coffee shop owner who knew him all these while. For some strange reasons, the owner file a police report. An arrest warrant was made and police officers came to his house to look for him. When questioned, obviously he could not remember anything. A decision was made to bring him back to police station for more questioning. They decided to handcuffed him since he refused to move along. His family pleaded with the officers and even showed them a medical report from government hospital confirming he suffered dementia. Unfortunately, the officers refused to accept and he was brought to police station.

    The outcome is obvious, they could not get anything out from the dementia patient and was released without a charge.

    The question is why they have to go through all these? Why can’t they accept diagnosis from professional doctors and issue a warning to the family to watch over his movements? Standard Operating Procedures? Why no revision to the SOP? Does police read newspapers where ministers are seeking community to help identify dementia patients?

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  • R_wang:

    Where were all the CCTV recordings in Mas Selemat case?

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  • Jin:

    a big bully is all I could say
    They could bully a young singaporean but couldn’t even protect a singaporean captain locked up
    In batam despite committing no crimes
    That singaporean captain has been locked up by Indonesia for so Long and he is being played as a pawn
    By Indonesian authority against pap
    Either way singaporean suffer
    Our very own government seek to imtimidate us
    And neighbouring countries like Indonesia and Malaysia take singaporean as a pawn
    To extract more from pap

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  • Can't Show Lah!:

    Make Singaporeans laugh till drop!

    Maybe better than Candid Camera!!

    R_wang:
    Where were all the CCTV recordings in Mas Selemat case?

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  • Taxpayers' money:

    Since all Singaporeans are dogs as alleged, what does it make of the miniSTIR, is he not a Sinkie as well? A dog!

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  • Bo Pian mentality:

    I cry for you Tan Hui Hui, you are knocking your head against the wall. Perhaps you are ignorant of the country system and culture. It is very rigid and feudal hierarchy. The elite and rich owe the country. They have it all: absolute power privilege wealth and connection. That why parents pressure their children die die must study hard to be scholars hoping for a door opening to join the elite. The elite and the rich have this entitlement thinking that they are smart one who keep the country running and you owe them. if you are a ” nobody” what is yours is their. What is their is their. Being a nobody there u just eat humble pie, work hard and accept yr karma. This is the Asian culture, the rich and powerful have entitlements to oppress the poor. The strong bully the weak. I wonder even if they is a change in power in political group, will the culture change.? Asians will always slave themselves for money even their master lord over and abuse them . They wont understand the western ideals of egalitarian and democratic rights to fight for them collectively. Asian leaders will always exploit this weakness. Don’t waste yr youth if u cannot live with the system , pack up your bag and migrate to a white man country where you may be poor or minority but u enjoy same rights as the elite and powerful. You maybe “nobody” but you can enjoy better weather , fresher air, cheaper water, bigger space, bigger house and less oppressive culture, less worry.

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  • A Dictatorship:

    ITE Only:
    @ Since the water only come out when being pressed, they laughed at how the inmates were unable to clean their hands properly.

    Psychology tactics ? Break your dignity break your mind ?

    Do not let it cloud one’s judgement.

    Logically , after one shit. No paper, water and soap. Definitely unclean right. If they want to laugh, so be it. Switch places they will also be the same.

    No big deal.

    The tough guys are all talking in TRE.
    Old fiack loves breaking the mind of dafts and opponents.
    The trick is for the mind to be flexible.
    Show them what they want to see and hear at times.
    Kick them at the groin when chances arise.
    Learn from Amos Yee, the one in a million teenager.

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  • S'pore:

    Since all Singaporeans are dogs as alleged, what does it make of the miniSTIR, is he not a Sinkie as well? A dog!

    That include the sissy pinky dog lhl

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