Taking A Photo Outside Court With A Placard For 10 Seconds Now An “Illegal Assembly”

Social worker and activist Jolovan Wham is being investigated for “protesting” outside State Courts without a valid permit, police said on Saturday (Mar 2).

Wham had posted a photo on Dec 13 on his personal Instagram account, which showed him standing outside the court while holding up a piece of paper with the words: “Drop the charges against Terry Xu and Daniel De Costa.”

Mr. Wham had only posed for a few seconds to take the photo. The incident happened the same day Terry Xu, the editor of socio-political website The Online Citizen, and Daniel De Costa were charged for publishing an article that alleged corruption among key figures in the Singapore Government.

Police said that Wham had written to the police earlier in November to apply for a permit to stage a protest outside the State Courts. His application was not approved. “The State Courts is gazetted as a Prohibited Area under the Public Order Act, with stricter security protocols,” police said. 

On Mar 1, Mr. Wham was called to the Cantonment Police Station and was interviewed for over an hour. His phone was also confiscated by the Police.

Mr. Wham also faces two other charges of organizing public assembly without a police permit and another two charges for not signing the police statements.

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