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Service Before Self: Going Viral, for the Right Reasons
Honouring our Home Team Guardians for their everyday acts of selflessness and bravery.

It’s easy to take what we have for granted. Every day, our Home Team Guardians do countless little actions that are little remarked upon, but contribute to our safety and security. From protecting the most vulnerable among us to putting their lives on the line, our Home Team Guardians are always there, ready to serve. 

Here’s a story of a Home Team officer who was recognised for his efforts at the Minister’s Awards Presentation Ceremony on 24 September 2018. 

Going Viral, for the Right Reasons
“After the video went viral, even my mother saw it, and got a shock!” recalled SGT (2) Muhammad Ridhuan Bin Abdol Mutalib, a Profiling Specialist with the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA). “She thought something bad had happened to me, so she quickly called my wife to ask if I was okay.”

It was about 1.50pm on 5 January 2018. SGT (2) Ridhuan was deployed at one of the exit points at Woodlands Checkpoint when he heard a loud crash. A car had driven into a lamp-post near him. 

1 Oct 2018 ICA Min Awards SGT (2) Ridhuan
SGT (2) Muhammad Ridhuan Bin Abdol Mutalib has served with the ICA since 2011. PHOTO: Fatimah Mujibah

SGT (2) Ridhuan immediately approached the car to check on the driver. “As I got closer, a man got out of the car,” he recalled. “He looked disoriented and shouted at me, warning me away. Then he started throwing items from the car, which we later identified as drugs and drug apparatus. After that, he poured kerosene over himself and tried to start a fire.” 

SGT (2) Ridhuan kept his eyes on the suspect and approached cautiously. At that moment, the suspect produced a sickle and made his way towards several cars that were nearby. 

SGT (2) Ridhuan drew his service baton. Worried that the suspect might harm other travellers, he called for backup. “I knew I had to manage the situation and distract the suspect,” said SGT (2) Ridhuan. “That’s why I continued to engage him.”

As he did this, other Home Team officers and checkpoint officers arrived on the scene. Together, they subdued the suspect and took him into custody. Other offensive weapons and drugs were found in his possession. 

A short video showing the suspect and the officers at the scene quickly went viral. “My wife saw the video, recognised me and called,” said SGT (2) Ridhuan. “I reassured her and told her that thankfully, no one had been injured.” 

At the end of the day, this was the most important thing to him: “No members of the public, or any officers who were at the scene, was hurt that day, and that’s what matters most to me.” 
 
SGT (2) Ridhuan received the Minister for Home Affairs Operational Excellence Award, in recognition of his role in the successful arrest of the suspect, who was wanted for robbery and drug-related offenses. 

The Minister’s Awards Presentation Ceremony 2018
The Minister’s Awards recognise Home Team officers for their professionalism, dedication and achievements in safeguarding Singapore. This year’s Ceremony took place on 24 September 2018 and saw 132 awards presented to outstanding Home Team officers, teams and agencies. To read the opening address by Minister for Home Affairs and Minster for Law Mr K Shanmugam, click here

  1. by Desmond Ang
  2. 01 October 2018
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