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Monday, 16 August 2010

Why photographer was handcuffed ?

A "cow dung" has to be described as "cow dung" no matter how and where a bull or cow shitted it.

The explanation given by this million-dollar Minister is ridiculous and certainly beyond what the normal man could understand and comprehend. Do I have to be a Million-Dollar Man in order to understand?

Will a photographer holding a camera be able to take aim and shoot like a M-16 rifle?

If the photographer had stopped his car illegally on a road during the flood, how would this act be causing "clear danger" to the photographer himself and other motorists ? I am certainly and still unclear about this.

He was uncuffed after his identity was verified. So the media photographer was excused after showing his pass? If a civilian had been caught taking those photographs, would he be sent to jail for endangering himself and others? Then why the "double standard"? Are we in a "WAR ZONE"?

Even with his reply, can one truly understands what were the "dangers" caused?

Come on, be more "productive" than this. Good try though, in my Army Days when I was doing my NS, this would have been "classified" as "throwing smoke".

Reference :-
Straits Time Online
Aug 16, 2010
POLICE handcuffed a photographer taking flood pictures along Bukit Timah Road last month because public safety was involved, said Law Minister and Second Minister for Home Affairs in Parliament on Monday.

Mr K. Shanmugam, replying to a question from Marine Parade GRC MP Ong Seh Hong, said the police generally do not interfere with the media or members of the public taking photographs of floods 'so long as it does not obstruct police operations or does not pose a danger to others or themselves.'

Dr Ong had asked the minister on guidelines for the use of handcuffs following an incident which concerned Lianhe Wanbao chief photographer Shafie Goh in Bukit Timah, near Maplewoods Condominium, on July16.

In his reply, Mr Shanmugam said it was raining heavily that morning and the rain had caused a road divider, which had been excavated, to be flooded. Ordinarily, the construction work would have been surrounded by safety barriers, but the safety barriers had been washed away due to the flood. Motorists driving along the road were unable to see the depression, leading three cars to land in the depression.

The photographer had stopped his car illegally along the road at about 7.40am to take the photographs, causing an obstruction to other motorists, he told the House.

'There was clear danger not only to the photographer but to other motorists as well,' said Mr Shamugam.

When the photographer ignored a second advice from police against taking pictures on the flooded centre divider, he was handcuffed. He was uncuffed after his identity was verified.

The minister also explained that police officers are trained to assess the situation when exercising discretion in using handcuffs. Handcuffs may be used if a suspect is violent or if there is a flight risk, or if a serious offence had been committed.

'In this case, although it was not intended to be an arrest, the Police Officer assessed that it was necessary to use handcuffs to restrain the photographer and stop him from continuing an action which the officer felt posed a danger to others and the photographer himself,' he said.

He added that both the police and the media have important roles to play.

While the police respect and understand the role the media has to play, the police have a duty to ensure public safety and security.

'We cannot allow our officers on the ground when performing their duty to ensure public safety and security to have their directions ignored,' he said.

However, Mr Shanmugam said in hindsight, both parties could have handled the situation better.


  1. Anything by the Authority is justifiable wan la. Even if it is injustice, it will still be lawfully legalized for sure.


  2. Tell joke also cannot tell properly.
    Nobody laughs.

    Until today, was Shafie subdued by the cuffs because he was violently refusing to co-operate or did he stretch out his hands obediently to be cuffed?

    Can somebody enlighten or maybe Shafie reply?