22-year-old woman jailed 3 weeks for breaching Covid-19 stay-home order

SINGAPORE – A 22-year-old woman was not allowed to leave home after she was issued a medical certificate (MC) for acute respiratory infection.

But Norliana Hazuliani breached the order, claiming that she could not get along with her mother at home.

The Singaporean, who was sentenced to three weeks’ jail on Monday (Aug 23), did so even though she was electronically tagged and monitored after committing other offences earlier, including theft.

She pleaded guilty to one charge of failing to comply with a Covid-19 Stay Order. One more similar charge and another of exposing others to the risk of infection were taken into consideration during sentencing.

The court heard that Norliana went to Clementi Polyclinic on Oct 10 last year as she had a cough and a runny nose.

She was given an MC for four days and told not to leave home during that period, unless she received a negative Covid-19 swab test result.

But she left home on the very day the MC was issued.

She was out for nearly 12 hours between Oct 10 and Oct 11 last year.

She took public transport and private-hire cars to visit six areas near public housing flats in Jurong, Clementi, Sengkang and Bedok.

Norliana received a negative Covid-19 test result only on Oct 13.

Deputy Public Prosecutor Matthew Chong said her reason for leaving her home to avoid her mother was “frivolous” and that she showed a “blatant disregard for the law”.

“The accused was loitering in at least six public places for almost 12 hours… (She) had gone to the vicinity of residential blocks, where there could be elderly and young children vulnerable to Covid-19,” he noted.

He added that Norliana was “caught red-handed” and had no choice but to admit to her offences as her actions were captured on her electronic tagging device.

For each charge under the Infectious Diseases Act, she could be jailed for up to six months, fined up to $10,000, or both.