Monday, 19 May 2008
Catch Mas Selamat? Send Iron Man
Not long after Mas Selamat's escape on 27 Feb, I wanted to write a column about it.
But I was worried that the authorities would suddenly get their act together, catch the guy and put an end to our national embarrassment before my article came out, thus rendering it obsolete.
I expressed my concern to a colleague who scoffed dismissively with a cynicism that only a long-time New Paper journalist could muster. "As if," she said.
That was 11 weeks ago. I needn't have worried.
Mas Selamat is still at large, even though he's not in the news much these days, dominated in turn by seat belts, killer cyclones and earthquakes, not to mention killer grocery prices.
He's not even the most famous man in Singapore anymore. That honour belongs to Iron Man this week. (Cue Black Sabbath.)
I mean what news is there to report about Mas Selamat since the sage culminated in the big reveal in Parliament last month that he climbed out the toilet window of the Whitley Road Detention Centre?
Not exactly the stuff of Hollywood blockbusters - like say, Iron Man.
It was an anti-climatic climax that provided no closure whatsoever because, well, we still haven't caught the guy. Maybe we should send Iron Man. (Sing it, Ozzy!)
How is it possible that we could apprehend that 20-year-old National Serviceman who went AWOL with a SAR-21 rifle within 24 hours last September, but not a mole-faced middle-aged escaped detainee with a limp?
That's what leading to conspiracy theories, like the one Opposition MP Low Thia Khiang brought up in Parliament that Mas Selamat had died in detention.
To some, it's more reasonable and perhaps more comforting to believe in a successful government cover-up than a failed island-wide manhunt by the security forces on which our nation's defence depends.
Despite the authorities' insistence on the contrary, many take it for granted that if Mas Selamat hasn't gone from this earth, he has at least gone from this country.
This is based on no more evidence than the simple fact that he hasn't been found yet. Because if he's still here, Singapore is so small that we would've found him already.
I beg to differ. My niece is getting married next month and she is not sending me a cake. Why? Because she lives in Bedok and I live in Choa Chu Kang. She said it was too far for her to travel. Clearly, Singapore isn't so small after all.
Now I just hope they don't catch Mas Selamat before this column comes out.
TRENDING POSTS OF THE WEEK
A week ago, The Straits Times reported that middle-aged men are getting testosterone injections to boost their sex drive. This confused...
It’s like 1996 all over again. Only instead of the Macarena , we’re dancing Gangnam Style . Instead of watching the White House get bl...
Another major MRT disruption, another call for the SMRT CEO to resign . In the wake of tonight's massive MRT fiasco, will SMRT CEO Des...
Talk about box office gross behaviour. By now, even non-movie buffs should know who Harvey Weinstein is. But did you know Weinste...
I first met Darryl David at Gurmit Singh's wedding dinner in 1995. David's date was a woman named Lynette Pang , who was a stag...
A few days ago, my former employer, MediaCorp, announced the surprise resignation of its chief executive officer, Lucas Chow. So what ...
Dear Jem, Congratulations on your opening yesterday. Four days late. Wink, wink. Just between you and me, the delay was intentiona...
Two years ago, when celebrity radio deejay Glenn Ong revealed that he was dating fellow MediaCorp deejay Jean Danker after splitting fro...
Last month, it was reported that Nike would stop supplying to smaller shops like those in Queensway Shopping Centre and Peninsula Plaza. ...
There will be no Today tomorrow. At least in print form. On Friday, Mediacorp published the final print edition of Today newspaper and S...