Our Community

Be A Guardian: Enforcement and Beyond

For CNB officers, it’s about being able to take on multiple roles, from enforcement and drug supervision to counselling and education.
GRAPHIC: Cheryl Soh

Be A Guardian showcases fulfilling career, scholarship and sponsorship opportunities in the Home Team.

To know what it takes to serve, sometimes you have to look beyond a person’s surface attributes. 

I met Staff Sergeant Nurfarhanah Binte Osman, a Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) officer who’s in her sixth year of service. Petite and soft-spoken, she didn’t fit my idea of an Enforcement Officer. But this soon changed – confident and professional throughout our conversation, it was only when she shared how drugs can destroy families that she showed her softer side.

Why did you decide to join the Home Team?

I was studying Business at Temasek Polytechnic when, one day, I received a mailer from the Ministry of Home Affairs that highlighted various career paths in the Home Team. I have several cousins who are serving with the Singapore Police Force and Singapore Prison Service. I wanted to play my part, and be the first to serve with CNB!

Also, I’ve seen the negative consequences that drug abuse can bring. I wanted to make a difference and be involved in this cause, so I decided to apply to join CNB. 

What are the day-to-day tasks of an Enforcement Officer?

Our assignments may vary from week to week. They can range from going on enforcement operations and raids to supervising urine tests for drug supervisees. We also counsel them as they undergo rehabilitation. Sometimes, we conduct Preventive Drug Education (PDE) talks and community outreach as well. 

Sharpening her skills at CNB’s dedicated training space. PHOTOS: Ashley Tuen

I’ve had several cases that stood out for me. In one case, my team was supervising a couple who was abusing drugs. Not only had the female suspect fallen back into drugs, she was also pregnant. It was distressing for me when I learnt that her baby boy was experiencing withdrawal symptoms at birth, due to his mother’s addiction.

As both parents were serving time for their offences, the child received care under a social support programme. It pained me to know that because of drugs, the parents had hurt their child and would miss out on his early years.

What does doing a good job mean to you?
Job satisfaction comes from knowing that we’ve done our job professionally, and knowing that we’ve arrested drug offenders so that they will not be further destroyed emotionally, physically and mentally by drugs. It is comforting to know that offenders will receive the necessary help during rehabilitation, and that our PDE efforts might encourage one to turn away from drugs. 

There are times when family members have had to witness their loved ones being arrested for drug offences. This can leave them at a loss. To me, doing a good job also means being able to provide these family members with emotional support. 

What would your advice be to someone who’s considering a career with CNB?

There’ll be challenges to overcome and, along the way, you’ll gain a broader perspective of what it takes to keep Singapore drug-free. If you’re committed to serving and have a strong desire to join the fight against drugs, this is the career for you. As a CNB officer, you can make a make a real difference.

Be A Guardian of Our Home
A recipient of the Home Team Diploma Merit Sponsorship, Nurfarhanah was awarded the Ministry of Home Affairs Degree Sponsorship in 2017 and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology and Security at the Singapore Institute of Technology, in collaboration with the University of Liverpool.

Keen to become a Home Team Guardian? Visit the MHA Careers webpage to find out more about available Sponsorship and Scholarship opportunities.
- Be A Guardian: Walking the Beat in Queenstown
- Be A Guardian: Investigating Immigration Offenders
- Be A Guardian: Saving Lives, with Professionalism and Passion
- Be A Guardian: Helping Young Offenders Embark on a New Chapter in Their Lives

Written by

Ashley Tuen


14 November 2019

Related Articles