A 23-year-old Singapore citizen of Filipino birth was sentenced to 10 weeks in jail on Tuesday for failing to report for National Service and for remaining overseas without an exit permit for about three and a half years.
Joseph Daluping Kum moved from the Philippines to Singapore with his family when he was one year old. His father subsequently obtained Singaporean citizenship for his son, Lianhe Zaobao (Singapore) reported.
According to the defendant’s lawyer, Kum’s mother later found her husband was unfaithful, so she returned to the Philippines with her three sons, Kum being the middle brother.
From the age of nine, Kum remained in the Philippines, going to school. He briefly returned to Singapore to obtain an identification card when he was 13.
In August 2011, Kum returned to Singapore as he learned from his father that he had to report for National Service enlistment. He was then informed by officials at the Central Manpower Base (CMPB) that remaining overseas without an exit permit was a violation of law. He protested that he had been unaware of this, but nevertheless agreed to pay a fine of S$1,000 (about US$735).
However, Kum’s father refused to pay the fine, and kicked his son out of their home after numerous quarrels. Joseph sought help from his aunt, a domestic helper in Singapore.
On December 7, 2011, a notice of National Service enlistment was sent to Kum’s father’s home, ordering Joseph to report to the Basic Military Training Centre (BMTC) on March 8, 2012.
On February 8, a month before he was to report to the center, Kum left Singapore without an exit permit. He became a wanted person by police as of March 13.
On September 1, 2015, Kum, after saving sufficient money with the help of his mother and elder brother, returned to Singapore in order to pay the outstanding fine. He was then arrested. He reported to the CMPB and paid the outstanding fine two days later.
In November 11, 2015, he reported for National Service enlistment, and is currently serving in the Singapore Armed Forces Military Police Command. He will serve the 10-week jail term after he completes his National Service next month.