It was his fifth and final morning spent on the stand, but it didn’t go much easier for former Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) director Ng Boon Gay than in previous days.
State prosecutors challenged a visibly-drained Ng over his testimony relating to his awareness of Hitachi Data Systems (HDS)’s involvement in a second tender he approved and his understanding of what exactly Hitachi dealt in.
He was also asked why he was able to disclose detailed information about the additional sexual encounters with Cecilia Sue, who had worked as an IT sales executive with Hitachi, when he was unable to recall it when his statements were recorded at the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB).
This brings the total number of discrepancies highlighted by the prosecution to 10, adding to an initial seven it raised on Thursday when it applied for the impeachment of Ng as a credible witness.
Ng was first accused of giving contradictory evidence on his knowledge that the main contractor for the CNB’s Storage Resource Management System (SRMS) project had subcontracted the technology implementation directly to Hitachi.
Responding to this, he explained that it was possible for the contractor, Jardine OneSolution, to purchase the Hitachi software through another contractor, and that it may not necessarily have gone directly to Hitachi for it.
“What I meant is there could be different intermediaries between Jardine OneSolution and Hitachi,” he said. “How or where they get (the technology) from, I wouldn’t be able to know.”
He was also asked why he was able to tell his CPIB recording officer that he knew that HDS dealt with data storage when in court he testified that he was “not familiar with the details” and only knew that Hitachi was an IT company, not what it specifically dealt in.
To this, he responded that he referred to numerous different points in time when he was delivering his statements to the CPIB officer, and said he was unsure which time frame he was referring to when he said he knew that Hitachi dealt in data storage.
On his testimony of numerous other sexual encounters that he had with Sue as compared to his inability to recall them when speaking to the CPIB officer, Ng said the instances only came to him after a period of time, after reflection, and he needed time to think about the circumstances in order to recall the occasions he later testified about in court earlier this week.
In subsequent re-examination by defence counsel Tan Chee Meng, it emerged also that Sue had used the term “intimate relationship” to refer to her links with Ng in her statements to the CPIB even though the two had not discussed what to call it previously.
Defence counsel also called up a single witness, Oracle Corporation’s human resources director Sharon Yan, on Friday to take the stand.
In the roughly 15 minutes she spent in the hot seat, Yan was asked to confirm that she had indeed sent an email to members of the company’s management on 13 June.
The contents of the email, which was not read out or revealed in court, detailed the discussion at a meeting Yan had with Sue on the day or a day after her identity was formally revealed and reported.
Asked by deputy public prosecutor Kelvin Kow whether Sue had explained why she said — as reported in the email Yan wrote — she was “thankful to Oracle for keeping her”, Yan said, “I don’t think we had that conversation. It is a statement from her (Sue). My role is to jot down that statement from Ms Sue.”
District Judge Siva Shanmugam then adjourned the court and addressed lawyers for both sides in chambers, where it was decided that submissions from both sides will be given in January. A tentative date has also been set for the delivery of oral submissions on 28 January next year.
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