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Heng Swee Keat reminds Singaporeans of the importance of racial and religious harmony

Posted by temasektimes on July 21, 2012

Education Minister Heng Swee Keat has evoked the racial riots experienced by Singapore nearly 50 years ago to remind Singaporeans of the importance of racial and religious harmony.

Referring to recent incidents in which derogatory comments were posted by netizens online, Mr Heng warned that they may result in tension and conflicts if not handled properly, and added that these challenges to social cohesion will not go away anytime soon.

Speaking at the Racial Harmony Day celebrations at Innova Junior College, Mr Heng said building a strong network of trust within Singapore’s multi-ethnic and multi-religious society is an important ongoing effort that should not be neglected.

“The racial and religious harmony Singapore enjoys today is not necessarily a natural state. There are instances where communal and religious tensions have led to violence in communities who have lived together. Singapore experienced racial riots on July 21, 1964, and saw how quickly communal tensions could escalate into violence,” he added.

Due to the government’s open-door immigration policies, the number of foreigners in Singapore has increased over the years, changing the country’s demographics to beyond recognition.

A number of foreigners have made insensitive remarks online which threatened racial and religious harmony such as PRC student Wang Peng Fei, but for some strange reasons, they are never arrested by Singapore’s ‘ultra-efficient’ police, let alone charged in court for their offences.


15 Responses to “Heng Swee Keat reminds Singaporeans of the importance of racial and religious harmony”

  1. Then he should not bring in so many foreigners to create the conflict.

  2. SashaQueenie said

    If these MPs are ready truly concerned about racial harmony, then they need to be reminded how fragile our social fabric is. This huge onslaught of foreigners is not making things better. These newbies are bringing their own customs, culture and completely ignoring our local laws and practices. They act like this is their own country, forgetting that they are guests and should respect the hosts. What exactly has these Ministers done except spew useless rhetoric like this? Have they conducted lessons, classes and any forms of integration process to teach them about our local culture? These foreigners come here to work, so they need to learn about our ways. Not the other way round. I don’t see our MPs doing anything positive, other than have carnivals and take “happy” faked pictures with these newbies. It’s completely useless!

    • Edmund said

      The govt has already let in so many thousands and difficult to kick them out.Next best thing to do is to ask the people to accept them so we can live peacefully side by side . Every minister will pit in to ask the people to accept the FTs.They created the problem and now ask the people to help solve the problem using the racial riots in the past to frighten the people.

  3. Ron said

    The Internet has allowed freedom (and also abuse) of expression. Unlike the past where rumours were spread via word of mouth and cannot be refuted easily, the social media allows many to read it and to rebut them. It also allows the Police to track the worst offenders and punish them. So, it is a good media.

    There are many who are frustrated and will vent themselves. In a positive sense, it serves to relieve the bottled emotions and when they read what is posted by more level-headed minds they may also change. Human beings are reasonable. The extremists have to be taken to task and even kept in jail.

    The government should also look at the common greviances and work to promote greater harmony by solving some problems.

  4. Fuck PAP! said

    PAP will be the cause of Racial Riots 2012/2013. Singaporeans against the foreigners, see one hoot one! Start with the fucking noisy pinoys first!

  5. Jack said

    If PAP govt already knew this is going to happen, why bring in so many FTs

  6. Singaporean said

    I rather think that there is a higher chance for civil war than racial riot.

  7. P Koh said

    Talking is easy but so far besides requesting the populace to “integrate” and accept new citizens to promote harmonious co-existence what is government really doing to ensure that hatred is stopped and to get these new PRs and Citizens to show respect for Singaporeans and not to pass insensitive remarks. Perhaps those found guilty of such hedious behaviours should be sent back home as a deterent to others who think that they can behave superior to the local pure bred Singaporeans. In many ways and being out on the streets, I can see that we are really losing our Singaporean identity. The Singapore pledge is timely and should be promoted for as long as it can be useful. It has been a sad day for Singaporeans since the influx of foreigners into our midst.

  8. richard_wan_the_crook said

    Fcuk your mother understand richard wan, Who the fark owns a forum called 3-1?

  9. NaBey said

    Nabey! Cover ur s-hole first. Your pervert teachers install pin hole cam, shoot underage pros, molest school boys, scholars got child-sex-fantasy. Solve ur own problem first lah.
    If u really want racial harmony, go educate the stupid PRCs that what is “true” curry. Stop complaint people cook curry!!! NaBey!

  10. Naivety said

    Favouritism, nepotism & cronyism practised by Pro-Alien Party for all their beloved FTs especially with respect to the PRC student Wang Peng Fei!

  11. Hidden agenda said

    This is merely to justify ISA is still relevant today?
    If M’sia is going to abolish ISA why S’pore still need ISA?
    What do you think?

  12. Sgsiol said

    hello mr heng swee keat @ Wáng Ruìjié u better aim the bow twrds ur easy la because you secured ur job wit high pay..dun kaykiang too much in public media of what u say

  13. Fed Up Singaporean said

    I have said many times that PAP doesn’t care about anything but their own pockets… but here’s a poster that said it better then I can –

    Mr. Prime Minister,

    Racial harmony and national loyalty are two very different issues! It showed how inadequate your understanding of the people your government had brought into Singapore! Many New Citizens from PRC got upset when your news media reported negative news about China, its system and people. When a PRC driver crashed his Ferrari into a taxi, killing a Singaporean driver and a Japanese tourist, a New Citizen from China told me, “At least the China driver did something good just before his death – he killed the taxi driver and his passenger, instead of crippled them. They should thank him!”

    Mr. Prime Minister, you got no bloody clue on what is in the mind of these New Citizens or PRs who came from China! They despised nearly everything about Singapore! They came here to study, but they looked down on your education system; hiding in their heart or mind, they regard Singaporean teachers and students very low. They hate Asean leaders talking about disputes on South China Sea – “Who the hell are you to talk about our territorial waters!”, never mind they are holding a pink identity card!

    You and your government seemed to have over fantasized New Citizens’ loyalty for Singapore! I know them, you do not! Not even your father!

    Anyway, it was you and your government who created this problem of social fiction or tension between native citizens and foreign-converted citizens! Why are you now asking us to solve your problem?

    First posted By CELIA LIM on PM LEE facebook

  14. A G Young said

    Tracing back to half a Century ago, People”s REVOLUTION WAS NOT SELF INFLICTED. and also of recent EVENTS. If we can, never go against the wishes of its CITIZENS.

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