The Singapore Government has banned this video recording of a speech by former political prisoner Dr Lim Hock Siew which was filmed by Martyn See . Dr Lim was Singapore’s second longest-held political prisoner.
The prohibition will take effect on Wednesday 14th July 2010. The Government has also asked Mr See to remove the video from YouTube.
In a press release, the Ministry of Informations, Communications and the Arts said:
The film gives a distorted and misleading portrayal of Dr Lim’s arrests and detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA) in 1963. The Singapore Government will not allow will not allow individuals who have posed a security threat to Singapore’s interests in the past, to use media platforms such as films to make baseless accusations against the authorities, give a false portrayal of their previous activities in order to exculpate their guilt and undermine public confidence in the Government in the process.
Martyn See’s first film, Singapore Rebel, filmed four years ago, was also banned by the Government. But the censors passed it with an M18 rating in September 2009. It became the first political film to be passed after the Films Act was amended in March to relax the rules on such films.
The press release which Dr Lim mentioned can be found here. Perhaps the Government banned this film because of the potential ramifications it will face by letting the public know it asked Dr Lim to ‘save Lee Kuan Yew’s face’ by saying he was justly detained
The highlight of the exchange between Special Branch and Dr Lim:
Special Branch – You must concede something so that Lee Kuan Yew would be in a position to explain to the public why you had been detained so long. Mr Lee Kuan Yew must also preserve his face. If you were to be released unconditionally, he will lose face.Dr Lim Hock Siew – I am not interested in saving Lee Kuan Yew’s face. This is not a question of pride but one of principle. My detention is completely unjustifiable and I will not lift a single finger to help Lee Kuan Yew to justify the unjustifiable. In the light of what you say, is it not very clear that I have lost my freedom all these long and bitter years just to save Lee Kuan Yew’s face? Therefore the P.A.P. regime’s allegation that I am a security risk is a sham cover and a facade to detain me unjustifiably for over 9 years.
In his swearing in speech, Prime Minister Lee Hisen Loong said that Singapore is ‘an open society’. So is this what he meant by ‘an open society’? By banning this film and denying Singaporeans the truth? This poor man was declared a terrorist and thrown into prison without trial. As Lucky Tan puts it best:
Dr. Lim tells us that the authorities wanted to extract a ‘repentence’ from him as a condition for his release from detention. Dr. Lim does not need to repent…the people who locked him up for 19 years should be the ones repenting their atrocious inhumance actions.
Download the video before it’s banned. Here are the links:
(h/t: Thanks to Martyn for providing the video download links)