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Police investigate unauthorized procession outside MHA for potential public order act violations

Police are investigating a group of students and alumni who, without a permit, held a procession outside the Ministry of Home Affairs, potentially violating the Public Order Act 2009. The group was delivering letters opposing amendments to the Maintenance of Racial Harmony Bill.

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An incident involving a group of about 30 individuals delivering letters to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is under police investigation for potential breaches of the law, including violations of the Public Order Act 2009.

The group, consisting of students and alumni from various institutes of higher learning, is said to have approached the MHA premises on Irrawaddy Road on 7 June without a police permit for their procession.

“The police are looking into the group’s conduct at various points during their procession, which may have violated the Public Order Act 2009 for organizing a public procession without a police permit,” stated a police spokesperson in response to queries from The Straits Times.

At approximately 3 PM, the group arrived at the ministry’s entrance, where only two representatives were allowed inside to deliver the letters. After the delivery, the entire group was asked to leave the premises.

The letters addressed concerns regarding a proposed bill intended to consolidate race-related offenses from existing laws and implement new measures to safeguard racial harmony.

The group’s collective action opposed the proposed amendments to the Maintenance of Religious Harmony Act under the Maintenance of Racial Harmony Bill, which they argue could potentially undermine free speech and open discourse on race-related issues in the country.

“These amendments might suppress the necessary dialogue needed to truly address and eliminate racism,” expressed the group of students in a statement.

They highlighted the potential misuse of similar existing laws, such as sections 298 and 298A of the Penal Code, which the new bill will absorb and which have previously been used to penalize individuals discussing and analyzing racism.

The students and alumni are particularly alarmed by the vague definitions within the bill, such as what constitutes “remarks made in good faith,” which they fear could be exploited to stifle legitimate discourse. Moreover, the bill introduces enhanced penalties and allows the Minister to issue Restraining Orders (ROs) on the dissemination of content without established criminal conduct, which cannot be appealed in court.

“By enhancing penalties and broadening the powers to restrict expressions under the guise of maintaining harmony, this bill could severely restrict educational campaigns and peaceful actions that raise awareness of critical social issues,” the statement added.

Authorities have issued repeated warnings against public assemblies, especially concerning recent global conflicts, to ensure public safety and security, in particular over Palestine solidarity activities.

“As fellow Singaporeans, we should conduct ourselves responsibly, and not think we are above the laws and values to which the rest of our society subscribes, nor ignore their interests in maintaining a safe, peaceful, and harmonious environment in Singapore,” the police further noted.

The police also reminded the public that feedback on issues should be conducted lawfully, “and not in a manner which risks public disorder and undermines the social harmony we enjoy in Singapore.”

In their statement, the police emphasized the consequences for foreigners who participate in such activities and violate the law: “We will take firm action against foreigners who have been allowed to study, work, or live in Singapore but break its laws, including in respect to the Public Order Act.”

These actions may include “the revocation of their permanent residence, long-term visit pass, work pass, student’s pass, or other immigration facilities,” they warned.

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Shit government. They really scared of the public that’s why they create all this primitive BS laws.
They seem to be on edge every time the citizens confront them so they hide in their parliament and make more laws to press us.

How can letting off steam to fight for injustices is a Police crime in their eyes, when it is the Police themselves to fight injustices.

SG is upside down with PAP in OBSCENE power in their hands. Even judiciary works for the PAP to decide political justice.

Police State! Don’t keep bullying the citizens. It is a human rights violation.

Peacefully walking to a government building to deliver a petition is committing an offence?
Perhaps, they should be all driving there.
New PM, want to be more consultative?
Really!!!

Last edited 11 days ago by Chi Can

Their One Country and Two fuck Up system.

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