Both the States Times Review (STR) and the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) have made formal applications to cancel the Correction Directions issued against their posts under the Protection from Online Falsehoods and Manipulations Act (POFMA).
However, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) announced that Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam has rejected STR’s application.
STR did not comply with the initial Correction Direction
Shanmugam issued a Correction Direction on Nov. 28, 2019 against an STR Facebook post which contained falsehoods.
Tan did not comply with the direction to amend the post.
Subsequently, Shanmugam issued a Targeted Correction Direction against Facebook, which complied and amended the post.
The POFMA Office also announced that Tan was under investigation for not complying the first time.
STR applied to revoke POFMA
On Jan. 1, STR shared a Facebook post that said editor Alex Tan applied to “revoke” the POFMA order.
You can see it below:
A Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) spokesperson informed Mothership that MHA did receive an application from STR on Jan. 1 to cancel the Correction Direction.
The application has been rejected. MHA said:
“STR’s Application, sent on 1 Jan 2020, simply restated the false statements and provided no evidence to disprove the grounds on which the Correction Direction was issued.
After having carefully considered the Application, the Minister for Home Affairs has decided to reject it. Alex Tan has been notified of the rejection.”
In a media statement, the SDP informed Mothership on Jan. 3 that it has also submitted its application.
The SDP said:
“On 3 Jan 2020 at about 2:50 pm, the SDP has submitted an application to the MOM to cancel the three Correction Directions issued by the Ministry on 14 Dec 2019.”
The application comes a day after the SDP published an article on its website defending the claims they made on PMET unemployment.
They asked Manpower Minister Josephine Teo to retract the Correction Directions and issue an apology.
How an application works
Section 13 of the POFMA regulations allow for an application to be made to cancel or vary Correction Directions issued under POFMA.
Once the application with its supporting documents is submitted, the Minister has two working days to issue a notice of his or her decision.
However, if the Minister doesn’t issue a decision, the application is treated as refused.
You can refer to this link to find out more information on applying to cancel a POFMA Direction or Remedial Order.
Top image from STR’s Facebook page and gov.sg.