Two women warned for making 'inflammatory' race-related comments on Facebook: Police

Two women warned for making 'inflammatory' race-related comments on Facebook: Police

File Photo of woman using keyboard
(File Photo: Reuters/Tim Wimborne)

SINGAPORE: Two Singaporean women were on Friday (Jul 6) issued a warning for making inflammatory comments online, after they posted remarks on Facebook alleging that members of one race looked down on people of another race. 

The women, both 28 years old, were investigated for posting comments that were "prejudicial to the maintenance of racial and religious harmony in Singapore", said the police in a news release. 

The Facebook comments were sparked by an incident on Oct 23, 2017, when the two women were spotted praying at a fire escape stairwell of Alexandra Central Mall.

According to the police, the security personnel who found the women had waited for them to finish their prayers before explaining that the fire escape stairwell needed to be kept unobstructed for safety reasons.

The security personnel advised the women to pray in a designated prayer room in the vicinity.

However, the women returned to the same stairwell the next day to conduct their prayers. 

"When a security personnel again advised them to use the designated prayer room, one of them demanded to meet the security supervisor, and subsequently accused the supervisor of being racist by disallowing them to pray there," the police said. 

"After the encounter, the two women posted remarks on Facebook alleging that members of one race looked down on members of another race," the police said, adding that a report was lodged on Oct 25, 2017.

The police added: "The allegations the two women made were serious, but baseless. Such allegations can over time affect our racial and religious harmony. Obstructing a fire escape stairwell is also serious."

A decision was made, in consultation with the Attorney-General Chambers, to issue the women with a 12-month conditional warning, for the offences of making inflammatory comments online and for criminal trespass. 

"Police decided to exercise discretion in their favour and administer a warning instead of prosecuting them," said authorities.

The offences will be resurfaced for consideration if they re-offend within the 12-month period.

Source: CNA/na/(gs)

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