Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Maid - Boyfriending @ Geylang

Nora*'s soft laughter as she talked, was to hide her blushing face.
She regretted hiding the paper that My Elder Sister was searching.
But she was ashamed to let My Sister read it.

There was a picture and story of an Indonesian maid and her boyfriend.
She felt ashamed looking at it, without even reading the paper.
She was ashamed because it involved her nationality, and it revolved around the work she is doing, being a domestic worker.

I did not know which paper and who was Nora talking about.
In My head, it was because of boyfriend issue that led Me to want her to follow Me to City Plaza.
It was not exactly because of remittance.

The second time she remitted some money, it was My Elder Sister who did it for her.
With that money, the mother had bought storage for water for Singaporeans' (???) usage, when they will be at her house soon.


Stories of maids had been hogging headlines lately.

27-year old Indrani arrived in Singapore last year, in March.
In July, she ran away from her employer and prostituted herself to earn money.
In October, she discovered her pregnancy without knowing who the father was.

She dug a 10cm hole to bury her newborn, his umbilical cord attached, on April 18 in Eunos Crescent in a rooftop garden.
Her baby's mouth, alive when found, was stuffed with mud and dried leaves.
The baby is now under foster care.

She was arrested near Eunos MRT Station on April 24 after overstaying here for 273 days.

She was jailed for 10 weeks and fined S$2,000 for abandoning her newborn baby.

****** ****** ******

Ruliyawati, married with a son, entered Singapore in July 2010.
A month later, Md Repon Mostafa befriended her.

Her body  was discovered on Monday morning, in a 2-meter water tank atop the 15-storey Housing Development Board block of flats in Woodlands, serving residents of  Block 686B, Woodlands Drive 73 on May 16.

The 27-year old Bangladeshi cleaner Md Repon was charged with her murder between 7:10 a.m. and 9:54 a.m.

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An Indonesian domestic worker was about to finish her two-year contract.
She was asked to continue her service.
The four and two-year old toddlers she looked after, are too attached with her.

The maid laid down her term for extension.
She needs off days, which the employer agreed.

The employer received a police call at her working place to pick her maid at the police station.
Her domestic worker was caught with a Bangladeshi man at the beach not far from her house.
The employer was shown compromising and intimate photos of the maid with her boyfriend.

The maid gave the worst shock to the employer last February - Her two small kids were locked at home.
Just the two of them, to fend for themselves.

****** ****** ****** 

29-year old Anis Dwi Rianawati had told her employer that she was pregnant and would work for another two to three months before quitting.

A week later, she was missing from her bedroom at about 8am.
Her wallet, jewellery and some notes was on her bed.
It was a suicide notes.

The pregnant Indonesian maid had jumped from her employer's flat through the 18th-floor kitchen window on October 24, 2010.
Her body was found on a second-floor parapet shortly afterwards.

Her 45-year old Malaysian married boyfriend refused to stop seeing another girl in Batam. 

****** ****** ******

Another Bangladeshi worker, 35-year old Kamarul Hasan Abdul Quddus, met 25-year old Yulia Afriyanti at a social gathering in 2005.
They became intimate a year later in January 2007.

In September, she told her employers and friends that she would be marrying Kamrul in Indonesia.
But a month later, the marriage was called off as Kamrul was already married in Bangladesh with two children.

Early October, a Filipino construction worker, 25-year old Joseph Guerzon Corpuza, was given Yulia's number by his close friend, Aunt Annabelle.
He called her and they made plan to meet on Sunday, October 14.

She told him that her boyfriend had returned to Bangladesh.
Their relationship blossomed, became intimate, planned to marry but she never broke up with Kamrul.

Joseph would sometimes travel from Boon Lay to Grange Heights to meet her when she walked her employer's dog at 8 pm every night.
They had intimate relationship in November despite Yulia's fear of getting pregnant again.
Her previous pregnancy was aborted without knowing who the father was.

When Joseph saw the last of Yulia on Dec 9, she told him she and Kamrul Hasan were getting married in January.
On the evening of December 15, she called Joseph telling him she was going to Changi Airport with Kamrul to welcome his mother and brother.
He then tried to contact her many times but failed to do so.

When he finally managed to phone Yulia, a police officer answered, saying his former girlfriend was dead and that the police wanted to talk to him.


In mid December, upon Kamarul's return from Bangladesh, he met Yulia.
He then returned to his dormitory in Kaki Bukit but at 11.30pm, he took a bus to his worksite.

Less than eight hours later, a construction worker found Yulia's body in the cardboard box.
His fingerprints were found at the crime scene and DNA test showed they had sexual relationship within the 12 hours before she was found dead.
He was found guilty of strangling his girlfriend on December 16, 2007.

Her naked body was found at about 9.50am, in a big 1m long and 3/4m wide cardboard box in the bomb shelter of a third-storey unit at a condominium construction site in Queensway, near Holland Road, where he worked.

Police found Yulia's phone and jewellery in his Kaki Bukit dormitory locker when he was arrested on December 19.

He was sentenced to death in early January 2010.

****** ****** ******

24-year old Umi Umiroh was plagued by dreams of a crying baby in her employer's semi-detached house along Hillside Drive, a month into her job in July 2008. 

She told her friends about her dreams whom she usually met at the old age home, Ling Kwang Home in Serangoon Gardens. 
She took her employer's mother for therapy sessions twice a week.

The friends said it was the ghost of the previous maid's baby.
Kirun had confessed to them she had secretly given birth to a seven months baby girl in the toilet of her employer's house. 
She did not know what to do, so she just killed the baby, and buried her in the backyard.

While trimming grass in the garden later in theday, Umi smelled something foul. 
She related her fears to her employer of what her friends told earlier. 

A police report was made and the next day 9am, the police with four sniffer dogs, spent three hours in the garden. 
Then they digging up something buried about 15cm deep into the soil. 
Some small bones, born prematurely, wrapped with a yellow batik cloth, were recovered and analysed by the Health Science Authority.

Kirun, married with two children, was employed in June 2006, was always seen wearing loose-fitting batik dresses or oversized T-shirts.
Her main job was to take the employer's 82-year-old mother for physiotherapy sessions twice a week. 
They spent about seven hours from 8.30am to 3pm. 

Umi Umiroh arrived at Ms Goh's house on 6th June, spent two weeks with Kirun before she returned home on June 22.
Kirun, before her departure, had told Umi that she had at least two boyfriends in Singapore. 
She also told Umi about having aborted her three-month foetus, fathered by the Bangladeshi boyfriend.
Her Bangladeshi boyfriend gave her $10 each time they met.

Before she met the Bangladeshi, she was seeing a Myanmar national. 
She was able to meet them while waiting for the therapy sessions to end.

Three days before she left Singapore, she took Umi to meet her Bangladeshi boyfriend. 
He asked her to be his girlfriend after Kirun returned home.


I brought Nora to City Plaza to show her the popular hang-out for Indonesians on weekends.
It's Orchard Road's Lucky Plaza of the east. 

I wanted to show her how her folks are clothed, what some of her people are doing and behaving here - shopping, friending and boyfriending.
The partners are usually from Bangladesh.

But last Saturday afternoon, there were none to show her.
City Plaza was a desert, not a single maid's soul.
(to be continued)