Sengkang MP Raeesah Khan given stern police warning over online comments on race, religion

Sengkang MP Raeesah Khan had apologised on July 5, saying she did not mean to cause social division with her remarks.
PHOTO: Straits Times File

Sengkang Member of Parliament (MP) Raeesah Khan has been given a stern police warning for her posts on social media which promoted enmity between different groups on grounds of religion and race, and for contempt by scandalising the court.

The police said today (Sept 17) that they have completed their investigations in consultation with the Attorney-General's Chamber, following reports lodged against the 26-year-old in early July.

According to the police statement, the offences come under Section 298A(a) of the Penal Code for both her social media posts on Feb 2, 2018 and May 17, 2020.

In the posts, Khan had "allegedly commented that Singapore law enforcement authorities discriminated against citizens, and that compared to other groups, rich Chinese and white people were treated differently under the law," the police said in July.

The additional offence of contempt by scandalising the court comes under Section 3(1)(a) of the Administration of Justice (Protection) Act, for the same social media post from 2018.

Following the police reports, Khan made a public apology in a press conference held by the Workers' Party on July 5.

"My intention was never to cause any social division but to raise awareness to minority concerns. I apologise to any racial group or community that have been hurt by my comments.

"My remarks were insensitive and I regret making them. I feel really passionate about minority issues regardless of race and in my passion, I made improper remarks and I have to be accountable for them," she said.

Stern warning issued to man who claimed he leaked Khan's social media posts

The police have also issued a stern warning to a male Facebook user "Abdul Malik Mohammed Ghazali", who had proudly claimed to have leaked screenshots of Khan's past social media posts, for the offence of making a threatening communication likely to cause alarm, and two additional offences of promoting enmity between different groups of religion and race.

The offence for his social media post made on July 5 falls under Section 4(1)(b) of the Protection from Harassment Act, while two other separate social media posts from Feb 8 fall under section 298A(a) of the Penal code.

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rainercheung@asiaone.com