22 Dec 2005

Steve Chia charged with dangerous driving

By Derrick A Paulo, TODAY

SINGAPORE: Non-constituency Member of Parliament Steve Chia was charged in court on Wednesday with dangerous driving.

However, he does not intend to plead guilty and has submitted to the Traffic Police a letter of explanation about the incident in July, when his car hit a bus at a cross junction.

If he is found guilty, though, it could scupper his eligibility to contest in the next General Elections.

Any person convicted and sentenced to a jail term of at least one year or fined at least $2,000 cannot qualify to be an MP for at least five years.

The penalty for dangerous driving is a maximum fine of $3,000 or a jail term of up to 12 months.

Asked about the implications of the case on his political career, Mr Chia said: "If it's not my destiny to be elected, I'll accept it and move on. But does it mean I give up? No. I'll try my best to put up a challenge to the People's Action Party."

At this point, he is unsure about his chances.

"I don't know whether the case will be concluded before or after the elections," he said. But, he added that it would be "questionable" if the courts were to fine him the maximum amount because "nobody was injured from the impact of my car crashing into the bus".

According to him, a woman passenger on the bus suffered a minor injury because the driver applied the emergency brake.

He is disputing the allegation that he beat the red light when he ran into the SBS Transit bus at the junction of Braddell and Bishan roads on July 22.

His case will be mentioned again in court next month. - TODAY


Beach-yi said...

How ridiculous this have become, if it's not a hit and run or a malicious intent to commit dangerous driving, why should he or anyone be barred from standing in elections?

Don't PAP MPs get ticketed or genna accidents as well? Duh.

Gilbert Koh said...

I'm struck by Steve Chia's ability to shoot himself in his own foot. Again and again.

Anonymous said...

Not surprise at all in the context of Singapore politics - the oppositions are always ridiculed the slighest opportunity the ruling party can find. Those that came to the defence of TT Durai extravagence are just simply buried.

Anonymous said...

My sympathies are with the four protestors who wanted more transparency, and so I do understand what you mean.

On the other hand, when it comes to things like crashing your car into a bus or taking nude pictures of your own maid, well, I don't think you can say that it was the PAP who caused you damage, can you? It's all self-inflicted.

By the way, do recall that Steve Chia walked away scot-free in the maid incident, no imprisonment, no fine, nothing. So let's not imagine that the PAP system eagerly seized the opportunity to crush him to bits or whatever.