The Chairman of the Select Committee on deliberate online falsehoods Charles Chong stated on Tuesday (3 April) that the committee will look into the allegations it has received on some of its public hearing sessions before issuing a response.
MARUAH, a human rights organization, had issued a statement in response to the discussions held by the Select Committee on Deliberate Online Falsehoods, expressing its dissatisfaction at the modus operandi and the approach that the Committee took on when it came to the hearings from some civil society actors, online media practitioners, technology providers, academics.
Kirsten Han and social worker Jolovan Wham, who appeared as witnesses from the committee’s public hearings held last week, said that the summaries of the evidence they presented, which were released by the committee, misrepresented their views.
A group of civil society activists, including The Online Citizen’s chief editor Terry Xu, Ms Han, CAN, civil society group Function 8, and historian Thum Ping Tjin released a signed statement, criticising the way the hearings were conducted.
A spokesperson from Parliament issued an official response just after midnight saying that the committee is reviewing the requests to amend summaries of evidence, adding that videos of the committee’s sessions with all 65 representors are available online.
Many responded to the report on the story. Some said that Mr Chong should explain himself first for the allegation of the fake news he created on public funds being unaccounted for by Workers’ Party while some said that it was not a public hearing as the committee did not perform any hearing.3
Diu Lei wrote, “The source of Fake News being the chairman of the fake news committee, what irony. Where is the missing fund that you claimed exist!?”
Nicholas Cheam wrote, “Next time the select committee wants yes or no answer to all their questions, don’t waste people’s time to testify in person. Just send them a yes/no questionnaire. Spare the public the drama.”
Kiong Sham wrote, “The Select Committee is a joke. It is not consultative at all. Shanmugam should be sacked for bullying witnesses especially Mr Milner from Facebook.”
Kenny Chong wrote, “He went missing when he was needed most by representatives pleading for him to protect them. Now that the damage is done, after 50 full hours, he is now trying to remind people that he is the chairman.”
Andy Yeo wrote, “Singapore is deteriorating because of the current wayang party running the country! Next election must vote opposition regardless what to stop these wayang dogs!”
Maikel Poh wrote, “I feel so sad as a Singaporean that this committee exist after seeing the video of how the hearings were conducted. These people are just not ready to be consultative. Such disappointment. I think I have more respect for Donald trump now compare to this committee.”
Chew JC wrote, “Let me guess. After extensive review and also independent expert observers views obtained, the chair has found the proceedings to be fair and even handed given the gravity of the allegations against so and so which necessitates rebuttal.”
Terence Foong wrote, “I guess Charlie is going to ask Shammy what to say next.”
Charlie Lim wrote, “Truth is fake, fake is truth, fake is fake or truth is truth. When you’re in power, everything is truth. When table turns around, all truth becomes fake, all fake becomes truth. Rule with compassion and all things will be smooth.”
Dexter Bouw wrote, “This is like some CH8 drama. This whole select committee for online falsehood is a joke.”
Chandran Menon wrote, “He will not dare make any decision. He will wait for the Dog Lover to tell him what to do. And we can wait for a lengthy reply with no real substance.”
Henryace Ace wrote, “It was not a Hearing Committee because its members aren’t interested in hearing. It was a grilling committee. Grilling those experts with different opinions.”
Esther Lee wrote, “Sad to acknowledge this but in my opinion it’s all true after viewing most of the public hearing sessions on deliberate online falsehoods. I am so disappointed with such substandard/ugly behaviour select committee.”
Devaraj Simon wrote, “”The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people.” Martin Luther King, Jr.”
Ryan Lee wrote, “Mr fake news creator going after fake news. If this is not kelong i do not know what is.”
Steven Chong wrote, “You mean the chairman didn’t review the transcript before its post online? Is he not worried of falsehood transcription? Or some sessions too long the clerk and him doze off, end up the clerk fill in with their own interpretation?”
Tean Kwoon Chia wrote, “Members should abide by their submission and not sing out of tune. This is mischievous and absurd. The law Minister should be aware of this.”
Po Po wrote, “Who take that as a feedback? What a mockery shown globally! A smack to our societies at the expense of a tyrannical style of chairing!”
Frankie Tan wrote, “You and your stupid committee have brought shame to Singapore. Are you guys that dumb and native. We are not as stupid as you think we are.”
Luke Wong wrote, “Ownself look into complaints against ownself. Ownself exonerate ownself.”
Ben Teo Tecj Chye wrote, “Fake news creator talking about reviewing fake news now.”
Vengadesen Gurusamy wrote, “Hoax hearing. Shame on you Singapore. Just do it like Malaysia. Just pass the law. Why bother about rakyat views.”
Shi Huang Ti wrote, “This country is already a global joke. With this hearing, the committee has just make it official.”
Yochana Abigail Yule wrote, “More importantly let’s hear how you got into that Chair.”
Arzool Rahman wrote, “Our state law were created and uphold by this satan. He control every inches of our freedom.”