Father of Tampines accident victims: "I've forgiven the driver"

SINGAPORE - The father of the Nigel and Donovan Yap, who were killed in a tragic accident in Tampines, says he has forgiven the cement truck driver who had hit them.

According to Wanbao on Saturday, this is an about-turn from what Mr Francis Yap, 39, had said a day after the accident.

Then, when asked by reporters if he would accept the driver's apology, Mr Yap had said: "So what if he apologised, will it bring my sons back?" and indicated that any acceptance is only temporary.

However, Mr Yap says he has since told employers of the truck driver who visited the family that he has forgiven the driver for the accident. He had also asked them to pass the message to him.

The driver's senior manager and superiors from G&W Ready-Mix, which owns the subsidiary company Hi-Dynamic that the driver was contracted to, visited Mr Yap and his wife on Jan 30. 

Mr Yap said that after he had calmed down and thought about it further, he felt ready to forgive the driver as it was "purely an accident, and not a case of hit-and-run".

"After all, he did stop to check what had happened. And he's already 56 years old, maybe even a grandfather. Seeing the devastating scene, I'm sure it was a shock to him too, and it will be something that will be hard for him to forget," said Mr Yap.

"Losing my sons, my heart is broken. Even if I hit, punch or scold him, my children can't come back," Mr Yap indicated, adding that he hopes the driver will "continue to live a happy life and know that I have forgiven him". 

Forgiveness

Mr Yap, said he has forgiven the 56-year-old truck driver in part due to his faith, because "as a Christian, I must learn to forgive."

"It will be hard from now on for both the driver and us, but we must continue to look forward."

Mr Yap said despite the heartache, he still has "hope and peace" in his heart, and believes he will one day be "reunited with his sons in heaven".

candicec@sph.com.sg

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