In the first ever admission that Singapore is overpopulated, the Singapore Police said in their press release yesterday (Feb 26) that overcrowding in public transport has caused a spike in molest cases:
“Operators are required to prevent overcrowding and ensure sufficient lighting within their premises.”
After a 22.2% spike in reported molest cases last year, the Singapore Police yesterday published brief details of 8 molest cases as a warning to women to be careful in public areas. Eight men who each committed separate molest offences between Nov 2016 and Dec 2017 would be charged in court:
- On Mar 11, 2017, the police received a report that a 19-year-old woman was molested at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. A 29-year-old male suspect was arrested on the same day. He will face an additional charge of using criminal force against the woman for pulling her hair to stop her from leaving.
- On Aug 17, 2017, the police received a report that a 32-year-old woman was molested in a restaurant along Unity Street. A 42-year-old male suspect was arrested on the same day. He will face additional charges of using criminal force, voluntarily causing hurt and using abusive words against a public servant.
- On Sep 24, 2017, the police received a report that a 39-year-old woman was molested in a hotel along Orchard Road. A 67-year-old male suspect was subsequently arrested. He will face an additional charge of outrage of modesty involving a 41-year-old woman for a separate incident reported on Oct 2, 2017.
- On Nov 8 and Nov 11, 2017, the police received reports that a 55-year-old woman and a 46-year-old woman were molested by a cyclist along Toa Payoh Lorong 1 and Toa Payoh Lorong 8 respectively. On Nov 15, 2017, a 23-year-old male suspect involved in both incidents was arrested.
- On Nov 27, 2017, the police received a report that a 33-year-old woman was molested at a public entertainment outlet along Emerald Hill. A 33- year-old male suspect was arrested on the same day.
- On Dec 1, 2017, the police received a report that a 23-year-old woman was molested while exiting the lift at a HDB block along Sin Ming Avenue. A 28-year-old male suspect was identified and he was subsequently arrested.
- On Dec 10, 2017, the police received a report that a 19-year-old woman was molested in a private-hire vehicle at the basement carpark of a hotel located in Orchard Road. A 36-year-old male suspect was identified and he was arrested the same day. He faces a total of three counts of outrage of modesty.
- On Nov 14, 2016, the police received a report that a 15-year-old girl was molested on a train heading from Bishan MRT Station towards Marymount MRT Station. The victim recounted two incidents on Nov 8 and Nov 9 the same year where she was molested by the same suspect. A 34-year old male suspect was subsequently identified and he was arrested on Nov 18, 2016.
The police said in their press release that they will add more street cameras, and hire more foot patrols to establish a deterrent presence in crowded public areas.
Unfortunately for the police, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong intends to increase the population to 6.9 million by 2030. The Singapore population already jumped more than 25% in less than 10 years to the current 5.71 million.
Aside from stretched police resources, Singapore is also lagging behind infrastructural provisions that resulted in severely overcrowding public transport and undersupplied essential services like water and hospital beds.