Elderly man at centre of Toa Payoh shoving incident: 'It's only human to make mistakes'

This article is more than 12 months old

The elderly man at the centre of the Toa Payoh Lorong 8 hawker centre shoving incident has accepted the apologies from the couple.

Mr Chow Chuin Yee, 45 and Ms Tay Puay Leng, 38, were fined in court on Friday (Aug 11) for the use of criminal force on, and harassment of, Mr Ng Ai Hua, 76, in April.

They have expressed their desire to apologise in person to Mr Ng.

However, Mr Ng told Lianhe Wanbao that he feels there is no need to meet face to face, as the couple have been punished enough, and everyone should just "forgive and forget".

Mr Ng said that he has not been intentionally avoiding the media. He works in Toa Payoh and leaves the house early in the morning, returning home only late at night.

He goes to the food centre regularly to eat, and knows the hawkers there.

Acknowledging the couple's attempts to meet up with him to apologise personally, he said he wishes people can let it go and stop talking about it since it escalated so drastically when a video of the incident went viral, reported Lianhe Wanbao.

He also thanked the public for their support, and hoped that people can take away lessons from the episode.

"It's only human to make mistakes. What is important is to admit it, and then move on. There's no point clinging onto something that has already happened."

Mr Ng said he never had the intention to pursue the matter. After the incident, he did not tell his family members as he did not want them to worry.

"I'm just a nobody. On the day of the incident, all I wanted was to have a meal there and leave."

He said he would have accepted their apology any time, but then the matter escalated quickly beyond his control.

"I'm already so old. I do not have the strength to go and argue who's right or wrong with the youngsters."

Mr Ng added that he was a sportsman in his younger days, and understood sportsmanship.

"During a game, you may accidentally commit a foul, but just apologise and it's fine. There's no need to hold onto any grudge."

COURT & CRIMEhawkerToa Payoh