Like everybody else in Singapore or rather those on the good side and not the dark side, I feel very pissed off that the law as it currently stands is allowing scumbags like those shop owners in Sim Lim, People Park, Lucky Plaza and even Peninsula Plaza to get away with scams and high handed tactics. While I don’t really like the idea of vigilante justice, I think this is one time that I am glad some people has took it upon themselves to help Singapore get rid of these scum while our politicians and government twiddle their times and do nothing but make empty threats.
The only thing I don’t quite like is these people exposing the identity of the relatives of the Jover Chew guy. Was it really necessary to get at him through his family? Surely it would have been easy enough to just go after him. Collateral damage is not always a good thing or a necessary evil.
Sometime I think if our city is not so guai and law abiding, we could have got a few gangster, go into the shop with baseball bats and smash everything inside the shop to pieces. And while they are it, maybe a leg or two as well. Problem solve. But we are not, and short of amending the law which is gonna take another few generation of procrastination by our politicians, is there any other way to stop people like them? I think there is if CASE is more assertive and take the lead.
1. For starter, instead of just putting up notices at the entrance of the mall and on its website, CASE could with the co-operation of the MCST put up notices outside the shop premises where shoppers will be bound to see it. As these notices are in the common area, the shop owner will not be able to remove it.
2. CASE can also persuade the credit card companies and banks to cancel the credit card and electronic payment facilities to these business. As the scam involves mostly tourists and foreigners, this will impact a significant chunk of their business
3. Work with the telcos to install proximity devices near the shop and to send SMS alerts to shoppers within the vicinity of the shops.
4. Police can also be more pro-active. Obviously even no matter how stupid our policemen are, I am sure they can smell a scam when they see it. Just that more often than not, they are too lazy to do the dirty work. Instead of telling the victims to file a civil complain or take it up with CASE or the Small Claims Tribunal, why not invite the errant shop keepers to drink kopi. Do it often enough and these people will get the message.
Of course I doubt CASE will do all of the above. After all, it is just a toothless cat (I don’t even consider it a tiger). Sama sama the Police. Or at least until one day when an angry victim turn violet and somebody gets physically hurt. Meanwhile, our politicians who are twiddling their thumbs must be very proud and happy that we made it onto another international list. The “Advisory Warning List” of some countries. I am quite sure that this is another first for us and something to add to our growing list of “accolades”.