1% of M'sia armed forces suspected of ISIS link

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Critics question M'sian forest conversion plan

LEGAL?:Deforestation near the Sungai Brok forest reserve.
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'No food to eat, we are beaten'

Message from Abu Sayyaf kidnap victim tells of starvation, drinking ditch water and sleeping in the rain

CAPTIVE: An SOS message has been sent out by Mr Mohd Ridzuan Ismail, a Malaysian hostage (above) held by Abu Sayyaf.
CAPTIVE: An SOS message has been sent out by Mr Mohd Ridzuan Ismail, a Malaysian hostage held by Abu Sayyaf (above).
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SMRT to review dismissal appeal

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Tags: Singapore, smrt and Accident

Woman dies after Uber car crashes into parked lorry

TRAGIC: Miss Goh Pei Ling, 19, died after the Uber car she was in crashed.
SURVIVED: (Above) The accident happened on the Seletar Expressway towards Bukit Timah Expressway.

After the Uber car she was in crashed into the rear of a stationary lorry early on Sunday, the pregnant woman managed to crawl out of the wreck.

Despite bleeding profusely, Ms Chan Qian Jin, 20, was worried about her sister-in-law, a fellow passenger in the car.

She checked her sister-in-law, Miss Goh Pei Ling, 19, desperately for signs of breathing, patted her chest to comfort her, and wiped away blood from her nose in case it hampered her breathing.

This heartbreaking account was posted by Ms Chan on Twitter yesterday. Miss Goh died from her injuries in hospital on Sunday.

The tragedy comes just two days after Ms Chan married Miss Goh's younger brother.

Ms Chan, who is six months pregnant, suffered minor injuries to her face. Her foetus is also fine, reported Lianhe Wanbao.


The young women were just 10 minutes away from their home in Teck Whye after a prawning session at Pasir Ris when the accident happened on the Seletar Expressway, near the Woodlands Avenue 2 exit, reported Shin Min Daily News.

A police spokesman said they were alerted to an accident involving a car, a van and a lorry at about 4am.

SURVIVED: (Above) Ms Chan Qian Jin, sister-in-law of Miss Goh. She was married on Friday.

The New Paper understands that the van and lorry were parked at the side of the expressway because the drivers were having a disagreement.

The 22-year-old van driver was also injured in the accident.

He was unconscious while the young women were conscious before they were taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) sent three ambulances, three fire engines and a support vehicle to the scene.

No one was trapped in the vehicles, an SCDF spokeman said.

According to her social media profile, Miss Goh recently graduated from the Institute of Technical Education.

Her friends and family took to social media to express their grief and shock.

Her boyfriend wrote: "I love you, and I know you're in a better place now watching over me. You're the sweetest, purest and most innocent girl I've ever known."

Ms Chan, who was close to Miss Goh, also posted on social media about her anguish over the accident.

Just hours after the accident, she wrote: "I hope you rest in peace. I'm sorry that I failed to protect you. I'm sorry that I can't do anything much to help you."

When contacted, an Uber spokesman declined to comment citing ongoing investigations.

I know you're in a better place now watching over me.

- Miss Goh Pei Ling's boyfriend

Tags: Accident, Uber and Car

Simon Cowell calls local performer the 'tiger of Singapore'

Local performer, believed to be first S'porean on The X Factor UK, eliminated despite praise from judge Simon Cowell

Mr Benjamin John took the opportunity to snap a selfie with judge Simon Cowell after he failed to advance through the boot camp round of The X Factor UK. 

Mr Benjamin John is 63, but age was just a number when it came to impressing British TV personality Simon Cowell.

The local performer-musician, who is believed to be the first Singaporean to take part in long-running British reality TV singing series The X Factor UK, managed to charm the infamously snarky critic on the current season of the show.

Mr John beat thousands of hopefuls to crack the top 130 of the 13th season, but was eliminated after the boot camp round, which aired two weekends ago.

The X Factor UK season 13 is currently showing on RTL CBS Entertainment (StarHub Ch 509/Singtel TV Ch 318) on Sundays and Mondays at 10.30am with repeat telecasts at 9pm.

Unfortunately, Mr John's journey was not televised as his scenes did not make the final cut.

Back in June, Mr John was among hundreds of contestants shortlisted after three preliminary auditions performed in front of Cowell and fellow celebrity judges Louis Walsh, Sharon Osbourne and Nicole Scherzinger for the televised stage of the competition in London.

He fondly recalled how Cowell called him the "tiger of Singapore" after his audition, in which he earned three out of four votes to allow him on to the next stage.

Mr John, who also works as a freelance videographer and web designer, wore a colourful outfit with a matching fedora hat and sang 1950s classic The Great Pretender by US group The Platters.

He told The New Paper: "As I entered the room, the judges asked me about my costume, and I told them that costumes interpret a song in different ways. Simon cut in and said that it also makes one stand out in the crowd."


Mr John added that when he mentioned he was from Singapore, Cowell remarked, "Wow, that is 13 hours of flying."

"They were impressed because I had come all the way," Mr John said.

"The judges generally were nice and I didn't receive any negative comments.

"Simon said when I first walked in, I looked like a pussycat. But when I started singing, I was the 'tiger from Singapore'. He said I have got something in me.

"Louis said he liked it and found me very entertaining, while Sharon said she was sorry and said no. Nicole told me to be more flamboyant and bring out the fire through my eyes, and she said yes."

Mr John progressed to the show's boot camp the following month, where contestants are further whittled down after undergoing additional training and various challenges over two stages - the choreography round and group round.

He ended up partnering two teenage boys, a 16-year-old Italian and 19-year-old Irish, for a performance of Simon & Garfunkel's The Sound Of Silence.

Mr John said: "I get along with everyone. No one mocked or dismissed me just because of my age. There was no generation gap - I was having a ball of a time."

He went for his first The X Factor UK audition alone on May 1in London, and was selected by a panel of record producers and executives from thousands of hopefuls to proceed to the next stage.

"I decided to join because London is the best place for an artist to make a name for himself.

"I have been in the business for more than 30 years so I just decided to give it a go. I had nothing to lose anyway," said Mr John, who has performed with local bands Tribe, Blackjacks and Culture Shock.


He admitted that the entire competition was a "very tough ordeal" for him.

"If you are not strong and committed, you will not even get through the very first audition.

"The weather is cold, damp and very dry, which is not ideal for singing. I was very tired throughout because of the long hours of waiting and enormous pressure.

"I was also on a roller coaster of emotions. Some days I was very confident, some days I wasn't sure if I was going to make it. Some days I was so tired of waiting I just had no energy to give my best. It is really not for the faint-hearted."

When the judges delivered the bad news to his room of contestants, others fell on the floor and wailed in despair, but Mr John said he was "smiling".

"I wasn't worried because I am sure of my abilities. This is only a competition but I am an artist. I went there just for the exposure," he said.

He then took the chance to grab Cowell for a selfie, and even took a quick video in which Cowell said to him: "You are one of the best. Next year will be your year."

Ultimately, Mr John views his The X Factor UK journey as an "adventure".

"Win or lose, it doesn't matter to me. I am happy I got this far," he said.

Tags: Music and Singapore

How to perform Heimlich manoeuvre

Joseph Goh, a Certis Cisco officer, saved a man from choking at Joo Seng Food Place. Get the full story in our print edition (July 26). Subscribe to The New Paper in print and digital at www.tinyurl.com/getTNP

Certis Cisco officer saves man who choked on fishball

Security officer performs Heimlich manoeuvre on man choking on fishball

SAVIOUR: Certis Cisco officer Joseph Goh said he focused on what he could do to help.

The Certis Cisco officer was queueing up for food at an Aljunied coffee shop on Sunday (Sept 25) evening when he heard the sound of someone coughing badly.

His training kicked in and he rushed to help the man, who appeared to be choking on his food.

Minutes later, the crowd at the Joo Seng Food Place clapped when his quick actions saved the man.

Mr Joseph Goh, 23, who has been working or Certis Cisco for three years, told The New Paper: "I was queuing up for ban mian (noodles) during my dinner break when a man, who was a little big-sized, started choking."

At around 6pm, the officer, who was dressed in his uniform, rushed to the man's aid and immediately performed the Heimlich Manoeuvre, which involves abdominal thrusts. (See graphic below)

He said: "I have never performed a Heimlich manoeuvre before. But I told myself that I must keep calm and think of how to save the man.

"After about three to five minutes of doing the manoeuvre, the fish ball that was choking the man popped out of his mouth."

SAVIOUR: Certis Cisco officer Joseph Goh said he focused on what he could do to help. PHOTO: ANGELA CHRISTINA PERUMAL-SCHOOLING

By then, a crowd was watching him try to save the man, who was dressed in a casual T-shirt and believed to be in his 50s or 60s.

Mr Goh said: "I was not nervous as I was not facing the public.

"All that was on my mind was to focus on what I could do to help. It did not occur to me that such a big crowd was watching me."

One of the people in the crowd, Mrs Angela Christina Perumal-Schooling, 63, called it a beautiful act of saving a life.

The pre-press foreman at Singapore Press Holdings was having seafood steamboat and wasabi prawns when she witnessed the situation.

She was seated outside the coffee shop for dinner, occupying two tables with 20 of her friends from church after attending a wake.

"My friends and I were eating at the open area when we suddenly heard a loud commotion coming from inside the place. We then saw the man's face turn red as he coughed, trying to get the food out of this throat," she said.

Mr Goh said that he administered a first set of 10 to 15 abdominal thrusts before performing the second set when the man did not recover.

Mr Isaac Lee, 43, a sales manager and one of Ms Perumal-Schooling's church friends, said: "The man's cough gradually got louder and louder.

"From where we were seated, we could see clearly that the officer was continuously pressing below the man's ribs when finally, something came out of his mouth.

"We were all very relieved when the officer managed to save the man."


Dr Karen Chua, 43, a doctor at Well Family Clinic & Surgery, said: "Choking cuts off oxygen to the brain. Without oxygen, brain damage can occur in as little as four to six minutes.

"First aid must be done as quickly as possible to save a person's life."

Mrs Perumal-Schooling said that once the man was saved, the patrons broke into applause.

She said: "A lot of us went up to commend him on his quick thinking.

"Even though it was his first time, I thought that he handled it very calmly and professionally. My friend who knew how to administer it did not even move as he was too shocked."

Mr Lee said that without Mr Goh's proper frame of mind at that moment, the man might have died.

In response to the public recognition he got, Mr Goh said: "I just feel so grateful and happy that I was able to save a man's life that day."

Gunman killed after injuring six

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Former exec gets jail in ST Marine case

Mok Kim Whang (above), the company's senior vice-president from June 2000 to July 2004
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Tags: Singapore, Crime and Court