14 February 2016
The decision to sentence 25-year-old Brian Joseph Chow to 11/2 months of jail for evading national service (NS) enlistment for more than six years has drawn a host of contrasting reactions.
Some believe the punishment was too harsh, others say it was too light. Questions were also raised on why he was given a “discount” on his sentence for doing well in NS, which he served after surrendering in May 2013. IT manager Joshua Tan, 35, said: “NS is, after all, a national duty. Shouldn’t everyone serving this obligation be expected to do their best?”
But those interviewed, including parents, MPs, lawyers and defence analysts, all agreed on one thing – last Thursday’s decision by Justice Chan Seng Onn has brought much needed clarity on the punishment regime for Singaporean NS defaulters.
… The judgment has also made clear that dodging NS is a very serious issue. Defence analyst Ho Shu Huang, an associate research fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, said people will think twice before assuming they can stay away illegally, then hope for a fine by bringing up a host of mitigating factors.
IDSS / Online / Print
Last updated on 15/02/2016