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MediaCorp fined S$6,300 for breaching free-to-air radio code

The Media Development Authority (MDA) has fined MediaCorp S$6,300 for breaching the Free-to-air Radio Programme Code.

SINGAPORE: The Media Development Authority (MDA) has fined MediaCorp S$6,300 for breaching the Free-to-air Radio Programme Code.

In a statement, the media regulators said that on March 20, a Class 95 deejay on the Morning Express programme used a derogatory term to describe a visually-impaired woman who said she was denied service at a fast food outlet.

The same term was again used on air the following day by the same deejay, the statement added.

MDA said the use of the derogatory term has contravened the Free-to-air Radio Programme Code, which states that "obscene or offensive jokes, words, songs dialogue should not be broadcast".

The Morning Express programme is helmed by radio deejays Joe Augustin and Glenn Ong, and MediaCorp admitted in a statement that "inappropriate words" had been used.

Ms Georgina Chang, MediaCorp vice-president of English Programming (Radio), said: "We absolutely do not condone the use of unacceptable language, and there is a strict internal process to address it.

"Joe (Augustin) recognises his lapse in judgement and he has apologised unreservedly on air.

"Radio is a passionate and emotional medium, and sometimes in aiming to engage and entertain our listeners live, DJs make mistakes in the manner in which they express themselves.

"We seek your understanding that it is never of ill intent."

Mr Augustin said: "In trying to hold up a mirror to society and keeping our programme edgy, I feel I may have crossed the very same lines I've called out others on for crossing.

"And so, to those who I have offended by my choice of words on this occasion, I sincerely apologise. And I promise you that I will do better in the future." 

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