Authorities investigating 'Badge Lady' for walking around Jewel Changi Airport unmasked

Ms Phoon Chiu Yoke leaving the State Courts in May last year. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The authorities are investigating a March 12 incident allegedly involving a maskless Ms Phoon Chiu Yoke, who was jailed last year for not wearing a mask in public on numerous occasions.

Ms Phoon, 54, was allegedly spotted walking around Jewel Changi Airport without a mask on, in a video submitted to news website Mothership.

The incident happened about a week after influencer Wendy Cheng, also known as Xiaxue, 37, posted a video on Instagram on March 6 of a woman believed to be Ms Phoon walking around Orchard Road.

The woman did not have a mask on, and wore sunglasses similar to those Ms Phoon was spotted wearing outside the State Courts for her multiple court appearances last year.

Remote video URL

An Enterprise Singapore (ESG) spokesman said the agency has identified the woman in the latest video as the same person seen not wearing a mask in Orchard Road on March 6.

"We are working with the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) to investigate the case. Members of the public are advised to exercise social responsibility by wearing a mask when not consuming any food or drink," the spokesman told The Straits Times on Thursday (March 17).

ESG and STB are among the Covid-19 enforcement agencies.

Ms Phoon has been referred to as the "Badge Lady" online after she was captured on video retorting angrily as she refused to wear a mask at Marina Bay Sands (MBS) integrated resort on May 15 last year.

The clip, which went viral, showed her telling safe distancing ambassadors: "Who are you? Who are you representing? Where is your badge? Show me your badge."

Last September, Ms Phoon was jailed for 16 weeks after pleading guilty to nine charges of breaching Covid-19 regulations, with another 13 taken into consideration during sentencing.

She admitted to not wearing her mask on numerous occasions, at places such as MBS, Newton hawker centre in May 2020 and St Andrew's Cathedral in January and March 2021.

She had also breached her stay-home notice in 2020 after returning from Britain.

Those who are found guilty of breaching a Covid-19 control order may be jailed for up to six months, fined up to $10,000, or both. Repeat offenders may be jailed for up to a year, fined up to $20,000, or both.

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