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Kenneth Paul Tan interviewed by Time magazine on Singapore's political scandals

Updated: Aug 3, 2023

In an article titled "A Wave of Scandals Is Testing the Singaporean Government’s Ability to Take Criticism", published in the 2 August 2023 issue of Time magazine, Kenneth Paul Tan was quoted saying:

“Attempting to monopolize the ‘truth’ is a longstanding PAP government strategy of maintaining political dominance and control,” says Kenneth Paul Tan, a politics professor at Hong Kong Baptist University. “In the past, it was more common to propagandize through the mainstream media, demand right of reply in foreign media, censor or ban inconvenient claims, and sue for libel. These days, with social media fracturing this monopoly, a new addition to this arsenal of thought control is POFMA.”


According to Tan, these types of nitpicking reactions to public discourse could fan the flames of distrust and resentment. “As Singaporeans become increasingly skeptical of the ruling elite, the selective use of POFMA and other censorious instruments against politically inconvenient claims can lead to an unintended consequence,” says Tan. “People may come to see any efforts to achieve factual accuracy as desperate attempts to cover up or modify a basic truth.”

The full article is available here:

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