25 July 2019
Amid the prevalence of identity politics and hate speech on social media, Singapore will need to update a 30-year-old law that safeguards religious harmony, Minister for Home Affairs and Law K. Shanmugam said yesterday at a forum on religion, extremism and identity politics organised by the Institute of Policy Studies and the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The amendments to the Maintenance of Religious Harmony Act, enacted in 1990, will be made with the agreement of key stakeholders, including religious leaders and the people, he added.
Other speakers at the forum spoke on how religious identities were becoming a greater factor in politics globally, creating “us versus them” divides that played into the hands of extremists. They also noted that religion was playing a greater role in politics in the region.
Rajaratnam School of International Studies professor Rohan Gunaratna noted that Sri Lanka, where Buddhist extremists have been targeting Muslims, was in the process of introducing a Harmony Act modelled on Singapore’s Act.
RSIS / Online / Print
Last updated on 26/07/2019