Singapore requests corrections to Facebook post

Singapore authorities flex their power to make correction requests to a Facebook post.

The State News Singapore'a Facebook page allegedly made false statements of fact in a post published on June 27, 2020. (Courtesy of Strait Times/ANN, screengrab from pofmaoffice.gov.sg)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — Authorities in Singapore have contested the description of an alleged call between Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Malaysia Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin over easing travel restrictions in a Facebook post, Bloomberg reported on Monday.

The government has subsequently issued a correction notice to the June 27 post on a page called “State News Singapore,” which is considered critical of the ruling party and its leaders.

The correction directions argue that this was “false.” Malaysia requested the call and made the proposal for a daily cross-border commuting arrangement, Bloomberg reported.

The original post said Lee personally called his Malaysian counterpart requesting to open up daily commutes between the countries and that Malaysia refused.

The direction is the first known use of Singapore’s recently-enacted fake news law, known as POFMA, since the 2020 election was called. The election will be held July 10.

The government reportedly issued another targeted correction direction to Facebook, as well as a correction direction to Alex Tan, a frequent government critic who shared the post and has been targeted under the law before, Bloomberg said.