04 Dec 06
Singapore Democratic Party’s secretary general, Dr Chee Soon Juan was admitted to Changi General Hospital on 3 December 2006 whilst in prison.
The medical doctor at the Queenstown Remand Prison had found traces of blood in Dr Chee’s urine. He had suffered from abdominal pains and his blood pressure was also extremely low that evening.
His family was allowed to visit him on Monday morning at about 10.30am. Dr Chee informed his sister, Ms Chee Siok Chin that he had not eaten since Sunday 26 November. This was due to the fact that he would feel ill and throw up after his meals.
The doctor in charge of the prison ward of the hospital told his family that there was tenderness in Dr Chee’s abdomen, but he could not ascertain the reason for that. Dr Chee is also suffering from dehydration.
Dr Chee looked tired and had lost weight. The prison authorities said that he had lost approximately five kilograms.
Ms Chee and Mrs Chee were met at the hospital by the Superintendent of the Queenstown Remand and another senior officer who were extremely concerned that he was not eating.
During the brief visit, Dr Chee had asked if his family could buy food from the hospital canteen. The Superintendent, however, turned down the request as “cooked food”, other than that served in prison, is not allowed to be brought to prisoners. They however, allowed the family to buy him packets of bread, biscuits and beverages.
Although Dr Chee is amenable to consuming hospital food, he said that he will not eat food served to him in prison.
Ms Chee told the prison authorities that she would bring him “non-cooked” food and packet beverages and would hand it personally to Dr Chee when he goes back to Queenstown Remand. This request is being considered by the prisons.
Dr Chee also said that he will respond to the Ministry of Home Affairs’ statement that the SDP press release, dated 28 November, “contains grave falsehoods and serious allegations attacking the integrity of the Singapore Prison Service.”
Dr Chee Soon Juan is serving a five-week sentence for flouting Singapore’s stringent law of speaking in public without a permit.