<Contributed by Benjamin Matchap>
Singapore police needs to earn trust and not expect it. The singapore police force has recently lashed out at Reuters saying that:
"It is regrettable that Reuters had decided to carry unsubstantiated allegations from the organisers, and cited an unrelated case from 2014 in its reporting on the Speakers’ Corner. This was clearly an attempt to stoke fears about the use of the Speakers’ Corner and sow distrust from the Police.”
This was a response to Reuters who wrote:
"“The organisers of Saturday’s protest said more people would have turned up if they had not feared a police crackdown."
“In 2014, six people were charged with creating a public nuisance while protesting against a compulsory tax savings scheme.”
Even though all Reuters was doing was reporting that an organiser felt as well was reporting the fact that six people were charged for crating a public nuisance during a protest.
A country does not just run on money it runs on trust, trust in public institutions like the police force and the government, this trust has to be earned and not just expected.
If the police felt that this may have "sow distrust from the Police.” maybe the police force needs to look at their own actions and see if they might have sown distrust in themselves.
Like when Teo Soh Lung and Roy Ngerng’s houses were raided and personal belongings were confiscated just for posting comments on their Facebook during cooling off day. Till now it is a mystery why the police force had to raid their house and take away their computers of the nature of the offence was a public post that was online for all to see. Was the motive to intimidate opposition supporters? Also to my knowledge as long as you are on from a political party you should be able to post whatever you want on Facebook on cooling off day like many singaporeans did yet for some reason Roy and Soh Lung were singled out. Such actions by the police weakens the public trust towards the police.
If there is any mistrust in the police force in a country where our media is controlled by the government and where the government seeks to control it even more then the only source of the mistrust has to come from the police force itself.
I think the police in singapore have a very hard job and they need to be paid more and i totally appreciate them for their hard work however i think the Singapore police are victims of a political system that may at times make use of them for the purpose of fear mongering.
Just watch Speakers Cornered by Martyn See(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aY1ilenkPaM) and you will see how some singaporeans might have a mistrust towards the singapore police force maybe if we had compulsory recordings during police “interviews” a proper miranda rights where police read the rights of individuals to people they arrest and the police told people what they are being arrested for there might be better trust between the police force and singaporeans.
After better trust between society and its police can only be a good thing.