Elderly man curses & hits diners with trays if they don't give him money to buy meal at Marsiling

While some refused to give him money directly, they would be kind enough to ask him what he wanted to eat and buy him a meal.

Ruth Chai | January 26, 2024, 03:50 PM



An elderly man who frequents the hawker centre at Block 20 Marsiling Lane has allegedly been swearing, arguing and hitting diners with trays if they refused to hand him cash upon his requests.

Speaking to Shin Min Daily News, a man surnamed Xu (transliterated from Chinese), 65, said the allegedly abusive elderly man would go to the hawker centre and sit next to diners as part of his modus operandi.

He would then ask for S$2 to buy food.

However, if one refuses to give him money, he would kick up a fuss.

Quarrelled, argued and hit diners

The elderly man had asked Xu for money in 2023, the Chinese newspaper reported on Jan. 25.

Xu refused to hand him cash and even called the man out for being dependent on others.

"He immediately became upset and scolded me for not giving him money," Xu said, adding that he quarrelled with the man afterwards over the matter.

When Shin Min reporters visited the hawker centre, some hawkers mentioned that the man was often seen engaging in verbal altercations with patrons.

A cleaner at the hawker centre surnamed Tang, 66, told Shin Min that the elderly man would curse at others if they did not give him money.

"We have all been scolded by him before," he revealed.

Once, a customer got into a heated argument with him, which escalated into the duo hitting each other with trays.

Other patrons who have seen the man before said that they now keep their distance from him.

However, while some refused to give him money directly, they would be kind enough to ask him what he wanted to eat and buy him a meal.

Can't resolve the issue: FMAS

A spokesperson for the Federation of Merchants' Associations Singapore said they cannot resolve the issue.

Although the man would harass customers, his behaviour has not affected the hawker centre's business, the spokesperson said.

As the man has not been held accountable for breaking the law, the association is unable to step in and take action.

Shin Min reported that previously, a row resulted in the police being called down.

However, no subsequent action was taken.

Top photos via Shin Min