28th January 2010 was a special day to me.
This was the day when the TBT trial finally came to the end. Prosecution and defendants have both closed their cases and what is left is submission from both sides which is due on 25th February 2010, and judgment will be on 8th March 2010.
I am so proud of myself for having the perseverance to stay on the trial till the end despite the objections, ‘threats’, and the lack of support from family and some of my close friends.
I am so proud that I have overcome this trial without any legal counsel to represent me and having to do my own cross-examination which was daunting for me as this was the first time I was charged in court.
I am also proud that despite having E-Jay and Ti Lik leaving the trial, I am able to hold my own fort and persevere till the end. My persistence has surprised many of our activist friends and it is always interesting to have them come up to me to tell me how I shocked them.
Martyn once told me that unlike others who start from beginner to intermediate, mine was a straight jump to intermediate. How true. Unlike many who are still struggling to overcome their fears, I was forced to address my fear when I was first faced with the police investigations and thereafter the charge. The long drawn trial was really a challenge, not just because of having to sit through the trial, but having to juggle sending and picking up my kids from school.
I remember someone once told Dr Chee that this TBT trial is a good way to sieve out the leaders from the followers. At that time, I was rather offended by this statement because my good buddy E-Jay has chosen to plead guilty at the very start of the trial which I empathize with, and to me, E-Jay has every quality to be a leader.
However, on hindsight, I came to realize that it does hold certain truth in it. It does not mean that those who stay on are definitely of leaders’ quality, but I know real leaders will be able to withstand the test of time and will never be a quitter despite the adversity faced. To this, I give my utmost respect to Dr Chee, Gandhi, Siok Chin, John and Jufrie Mahmood who have been through many more trials than us, but have never given up. These are the leaders who when they called upon me, I will willingly follow.
Come 8th March 2010, I will face with the possibility of a a hefty fine which is taxing for a mother of 2 young children, but this is the price I am prepared to pay for standing up not only for myself, my family but also to my fellow citizens against the rising cost of living in Singapore, standing up to the rights of citizens to speak up for what they believe in, standing against a autocratic government who do not respect our Singapore Constitution and the rights of their citizens.
They can charge me, fine me, but they should not take that right away from me.