PETALING JAYA: University lecturer Prof Mohd Ridhuan Tee Abdullah (pic) was barred from entering Singapore after he was questioned for two hours, claiming he was treated like a “terrorist”.
Ridhuan said he was in Johor two months ago and “wanted to test the waters” if the Singapore authorities would allow him to enter.
“I wanted to test the waters and invited a friend to join me. At the time it was the school holidays and so the roads were jammed.
“When I was questioned by the officers, the jam got worse,” Ridhuan told The Star Online.
“Those at the (Singapore) immigration counter told me that I had to go to the office. There, I was questioned for two hours.
“They took many mugshots of me and treated me like a terrorist. They did not only take my fingerprints, but took the prints from my whole hand!” he said.
Ridhuan, who wrote about the incident in his column in a Malay daily on Sunday, said the officers at Singapore immigration asked various questions. However, he was not told why he was denied entry.
“I was treated like a guilty person. They questioned me like I was a terrorist. What is my crime?
“I have never bothered others. I do not have any criminal record in Malaysia. They say that they are a democratic country with freedom of expression but the truth is that the situation there is much worse than Malaysia.
“Our system of democracy and freedom of expression is far superior than Singapore,” he said.
According to Ridhuan, who lectures at a local university, the last time he visited Singapore was three years ago when he received an invitation for an event. He was pulled aside at the airport and questioned but was eventually allowed into Singapore.
“I believe this has something to do with my articles, because if you read my columns I always talk about Malaysian politics as my background is in political science.
“I always write about the ‘ultra kiasu’. And as Singapore is known for their ‘ultra kiasu’ attitude, perhaps they they feel sensitive about this,” said Ridhuan.
In December 2014, Tee was also barred from entering Sarawak.