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New Year Resolution for 2008: Swim faster, Run longer, maybe return to cycling.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Why Am I Court Martialled?

Dear NS Portal,

You are meant to be a one-stop portal for all National Service personnel. I applaud this modern initiative as it spelt out the convenience factor and something that NS personnel could finally have something to rely on in terms of coordination, the chain of communication, and yes, even a portal for unit personnel to check on important issues such as Pes Status, Pre-ICT Briefings, and how many more high-key ICTs to serve.

Alas, I'm disappointed to say the least. In fact, I feel rather insulted when I received a letter summoning me to the military court for failure to take my IPPT and registering for RT. If I were a skiver, I would have just resigned to the fact that the law has caught up with me, and I would face the consequence (ever heard the oft said 'do anything you want in SAF as long as you don't get caught'?). But that's not the case: I take my NS commitment as seriously as - if not more than - MINDEF does in its defence policies. If there's anything to prove my loyalty, commitment and seriousness, I earned the Best NSman title in the 5th LSSLC course held last year. In every ICT, I would run with my unit comrades during their IPPT to encourage them to pass their tests of physical fitness.

Likewise this past March 2007, I went for my ICT but I was told that I did not have to take my IPPT because I suffered multiple fractures on my left arm during a triathlon race last July 2006. Nevertheless I could still run and I encouraged my men by running alongside them during their test.

Then I received an SMS from the NS Portal (yet another innovative way of reminding busy NS personnel) in early May 2007, saying that I have not registered for my IPPT before my window closes. I was a little perturbed and so I called the 1800-3NSNSNS number and one of your men told me to book a medical board review with my unit. I did as I was told and subsequently saw the MO on 24 May 2007 and he excused me from IPPT and RT till September 2007 while pending further investigation from the Medical Corps.

And now I have a letter to summon me to court and to 'explain myself' while taking time off from work. The letter even states it clearly to my employer that I have to attend court and that they cannot claim MUP. Now my office is abuzz that I may have committed a crime. I try to explain to the many PRs and foreigners in the office but they just don't understand how a 'one-stop portal developed by a mighty army' can make such a boo boo. Truth is, neither can I fathom the fact of the lack of coordination. On one hand, my eMedInfo says I'm excused; on the other hand I receive a serious summon that compromises my integrity and my service to nation.

Instead of me 'explaining myself' to the military court for my (lack of) action in taking my IPPT, can someone explain why I have to go through an embarrassing situation due to some (lack of) coordination issue with the NS Portal, MINDEF and/or whoever is involved?

I hope this matter will be looked into and I sincerely hope that this is a technical oversight that will be rectified in due time.

As a responsible citizen, I will still dutifully attend the court hearing unless someone over-rules it.

With best regards,
3SG (NS) Cyclingturtle

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That's SAF for u, dude.
This is be in the forum. pesetriathlete