The paradox over POFMA

What stood out for me in the debate over the fake news Bill, POFMA?

How the WP MPs were courageous to raise real life examples of how a government could put out falsehoods and how this POFMA law may not hold them accountable.

First was Pritam Singh raising the 1987 case of the government-claimed “Marxist conspiracy” against 22 social workers.

Second was Png Eng Huat raising the more recent 2015 elections in Punggol East where the PAP distributed leaflets with what Mr Png has said and provided evidence of a falsehood – that some $22.5m in the WP town council were “unaccounted for”.

In both instances, the government chose not to engage the WP MPs in Parliament.

This is unfortunate for it would have shown how the govt would hold itself accountable when its members put out fake news, which in the second instance could have affected the outcome of the election.

It would have also given substance to what the ministers have been promising – that Parliament would hold the govt accountable.

Instead, all the ruling party MPs hardly made any noise about POFMA. All of them voted for the Bill.

But the question remains: what if it is the govt or the ruling party – whether it is the PAP presently or a different party in future – put out fake news?

This question has not been answered, although the Bill has now become law.

 

Andrew Loh

 

 

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15 Responses to “The paradox over POFMA”

  • Devil’s cunning enticements:

    Distinctively, telltales of the Devil.
    …continue to be afraid, do nothing….those “fell down and worship him” in exchange for riches and glory…..

    thus failed the Creator as Human,
    and be condemn to eternal hell.

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  • RDB:

    A lawless govt will enact laws that largely favour itself. Of not true, why then POFMA was unilaterally passed without any pap mps’ view.

    Please then tell us what is POFMA and is for who benefit or advantage. Can someone or the article author please enlighten us all what is POFMA and why Singaporeans at large should not celeberate.

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  • F*cking fake pledge.:

    The Pledge is a paradox, f*cking fake and lies;

    What “Justice” and “Equality” you talking about? when some can be exempted and unaccountable…. f*cking no justice.

    What “progress of nation”… “progress and protect the party regardless of justice or equality”.?

    KNN. shameful.

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  • I like lyCHEE, hate LOONGan:

    A very good example of ownself exempt ownself! Of course we don’t expect the MIW to be honest enough to tell us:

    “kaki nang put out fake news boh siang kang” (their own people put out fake news never mind).

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  • 1 country 2 systems:

    PAP/LKY learned from Deng Xiaoping.
    We also have 1 country 2 systems.

    Kooning 70% think they are in one system. When they wake up, they found themselves in the other system.

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  • LIONS:

    teo soh lung,in a recent article,pointed out that all 72 PAP MPs voted *AYE* FOR POFMA,amomg them of which many DID NOT EVEN PRESENT themselves for the debate sessions???

    HOW CAN ABSENTEE MPs vote for a BILL?
    IS THIS ALL MERELY CHILD’S PLAY?
    ARE THESE ABSENTEE MPs who COME LATER TO VOTE IN THE NIGHT AFTER ALL THE DEBATES SHOWING DISRESPECT FOR PARLIAMENT AND TAKING VOTING FOR AN ACT like MASAK-MASAK???

    Then,forget about HOLDING PARLIAMENT SESSIONS N WASTE VAST TAXPAYER MONEY.

    MIGHT AS WELL JUST WRITE THE RULE?
    LAW MUST BE DEBATED,NOT ANYHOW VOTED BY IRRESPONSIBLE MPs who take parlaiment sessions like going to wayang or getai during seventh moon?

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  • Chilli:

    No more kids cartoon shows.

    Animation are not real.

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  • pap clan of S$m lying liars:

    First was Pritam Singh raising the 1987 case of the government-claimed “Marxist conspiracy” against 22 social workers.

    Second was Png Eng Huat raising the more recent 2015 elections in Punggol East where the PAP distributed leaflets with what Mr Png has said and provided evidence of a falsehood – that some $22.5m in the WP town council were “unaccounted for”.

    In both instances, the government chose not to engage the WP MPs in Parliament.

    Very well pointed out. As things stand, both points are truths blurred by pap clan of S$m lying liars.

    Point one happened when the pap supreme liar lky was in charge. Point two happend when the pap supreme liar lky clown prints was in charge.

    Looks like lying is in the blood. If it is in the papa it is also in the clown prints. No wonder Mr Lee HY and Dr Lee WL cannot tahan too.

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  • oxygen:

    POFMA MAY HAVE HELD THE MIC, THE ROSTRUM AND THE POLITICAL STAGE but the political theatre is not much far from coprohagia.

    Why?

    Leon Perera from the opposition bench affirmatively and resolutely cut the chase of falsity. Discovery of reliable factual evidence entails complexity, uncertainty, costs and MOST IMPORTANTLY, THE DELAY IN DUE PROCESS FROM THE BUREAUCRATS TO THE MINISTER acting as arbiter. UNAVOIDABLE. You can’t avoid that without dispensing injustice I can see clearly. So in effect, POFMA is useless and ineffectual to contain the risks and outcome consequences of FAKE NEWS (if that is the easily determinable factual reality) going viral. Quite simply – if over 100,000 in the social media re-cycle this fake news, POFMA can’t apprehend over 100,000 offenders, convict all and supply free food/accommodation for the next X years in hotel Changi.

    If fake news is complex and uncertain of determination, the arbiter is equally likely to be wrong as much as the defendant/accused. Nobody has a monopoly of wisdom and information, Events and subject-matter of interpretation therein varies from diverse perspective thus adopted. For example, Trump claims China pays from the tariff, Xi JinPing says American consumers pay for the tariff. Economists say it is a form of indirect tax (implicitly US consumers in finality). So who is angel of truth,? Who is liar of fake news? Or who is stupid of reality? I am sure the judge in a POFMA hearing don’t have a clue to this riddle.

    So if truthfulness/falsity is clear-cut, POFMA intent is redundant and useless of quick crime apprehension & resolution. If it is complex and not time critical, the process is faulty or susceptible to failed justice. Why?

    The PRESUMED, not substantiated, evidence of truthfulness (credibility) favors the accuser/arbiter. And the PRESUMED flawed propensity (character) weighs against the accused – on a matter of ONE disagreeing opinion (just like tariff example). At common law, the rules of evidence refuses the inclusion of opinion as admissible evidence. In POFMA, the arbiter is NOT EVEN AN EXPERT OPINION but one that is as flawed/biased as the defendant/accused. The result is that the judicial process of admitting the non-expert opinion of the arbiter IN PRIORITY ORDER right at the outset PREJUDICED THE JUDICIAL FAIRNESS to the defendant.

    IT SUBTLY SHIFTED THE BURDEN OF PROVING INNOCENCE TO THE DEFENDANT – who has THE ONUS OF PROVE the arbiter either lied, bias or simply otherwise wrong which the arbiter can elect to remain silent since his evidence is already admitted as “truth”.

    POFMA is a loaded political gun – a dangerous pathway to law and justice application.

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  • patriot of TUMASIK:

    How can a “FAKE” System with a “Fake” Malay acting as a “FAKE” President AND all their “FAKE” News…

    NOT be a TOTAL FAKE at all???…just tell them to “F…Off!!!” this coming GE

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  • HarderTruths:

    There is no paradox.

    Make laws to punish people who will not obey. Call the laws ISA, POFMA etc.etc. Tell people it is for the good the country.

    Then start rounding up and incarcerating those who may cause the leedership trouble. Sue the pants of those who cannot be put behind bars.

    Problem solved. Next please.

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  • Falsehood anybody?:

    If Charles was guilty of making that false accusation against the WP and a mighty big charge of misappropriation that one, then why hasn’t the WP brought him to justice at the law courts?

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  • oxygen:

    @ Falsehood anybody?

    POFMA didn’t exist then and there is no such a thing as retrospective legislation in law application.

    There is also such a thing as statement made under “parliamentary privilege” which can’t be impeached even if inaccurate.

    Remember this utterance – CPF is NOT your money made inside Parliament? The then Minister of Manpower, Tan Chuan Jin, clarified OUTSIDE PARLIAMENT that CPF IS OUR MONEY.

    See the windy happy contradictions?

    Falsehood anybody?:
    If Charles was guilty of making that false accusation against the WP and a mighty big charge of misappropriation that one, then why hasn’t the WP brought him to justice at the law courts?

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  • pap clan of S$m lying liars:

    Falsehood anybody?:
    If Charles was guilty of making that false accusation against the WP and a mighty big charge of misappropriation that one, then why hasn’t the WP brought him to justice at the law courts?

    Cannot lah.

    One country two systems, aka, one pap law two pap interpretations.

    Don’t forget INDIAN is malay and inside 200m is not within 200m.

    Only way for truth, and not fake news, to exist is to have New Government by a better group of Sporeans. There is NO other way. As things stand, lying is in the blood and cannot be cleaned unless there is a complete change of bodies.

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  • DavidLKSee:

    3 MUST-WATCH VIDEOS on Malaysia’s 1MDB Political Corruption Scandal

    (1) First Video (10 mins):
    See how, to cover-up the High-Level Political Corruption, various draconian Media & Anti-Fake News laws were used to harass/intimidate anyone and everyone who dared to ask questions on 1MDB.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rfv2NDAMidc

    (2) Second Video (25 mins):
    A quick overall summary of how the 1MDB Scandal was exposed by a “Whistle-Blower” — that led to the Disgraceful Downfall of former Malaysian PM Najib Razak, through being “voted out of political office” by disgusted Malaysian Voters.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FeIDiYbQaHs

    (3) Third Video (26 mins):
    See how Rosmah (the mere wife of ex-PM Najib) was “allowed” to wield considerable “political power” in the 1MDB Scandal.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U2K-afWJbXY

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