National defence every citizen's responsibility

Security checks at MRT stations are key to the anti-terrorism fight and safety for all, and I disagree with Mr Seah Yam Meng's view (Airport-like checks at MRT stations an overreaction; Nov 9).

While security checks at MRT stations may be a hassle to some extent, we do need to look beyond the inconvenience to understand the meaning behind it.

More than a million people take the MRT daily and it is easy for terrorists to slip in without anyone noticing.

Security checks are more or less a foolproof way to prevent terrorists from invading our MRT network.

Singapore is one of the safest countries in the world. The reason behind this is that we have a strong national defence.

While other countries have been plagued by bombings and shootings, Singapore has been very peaceful and quiet.

What we do not realise is that we are taking it for granted. We can be attacked at any moment.

We need to take measures to reduce the chances of attacks happening, and stringent checks at MRT stations are a good measure because they are one of the places likely to be attacked by terrorists.

Take, for instance, how the authorities revealed in 2002 that Yishun MRT station had been the target of a bomb plot by a terrorist cell here. If attacks could have happened then, why do we assume that they cannot happen now?

National defence and anti-terrorism is every citizen's responsibility.

The Government is implementing security checks and we, as citizens, should also play our part by cooperating with the security checks.

If people feel they might reach work or school late, then they should leave home earlier so that they can arrive on time.

We should not see these security measures as a hassle or an annoyance, but rather, as something that will protect the Republic and keep us safe and sound. Together we will be able to stand strong against terrorism.

Kenneth Tan Kai Siang

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 13, 2018, with the headline National defence every citizen's responsibility. Subscribe