Singaporean siblings Preeti and Subhas Nair have been handed 24-month conditional police warnings following an investigation into a rap video they had made in response to the recent controversial “brownface” e-payment advertising campaign, police said in a statement today.
Police did not reveal the conditions attached to those warnings, which are often seen as a “slap on the wrist” in lieu of prosecution.
“The video was in clear contravention of the Penal Code,” police said of the song, which has already been taken down from social media platforms.
“If this video were to be allowed, then similar expletive-laden, insulting, offensive videos, targeted at all communities will have to be allowed,” it added.
“There is clear evidence around the world, including in the past week, that such paths inevitably lead to more racism, more racial tensions, and eventually, violence. It will be the minority communities, specifically the Malay and Indian communities, who could suffer more in such a situation.”
No police action, however, will be taken against the people who created the advertisement. The Attorney-General’s Chambers advised the police during a consultation that there was no criminal offense with respect to the e-pay ad, the statement said.
Stern notices, however, have been given to parties involved in the ad’s production, according to a statement by the Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA) today.
“While the Ad did not breach the Internet Code of Practice, it was done in poor taste and had caused offense to minority communities,” the statement reads. “IMDA has thus issued a stern reminder to the parties involved in the Ad on the importance of paying attention to racial and religious sensitivities.”
Most of the people involved in the making of the ad, including Chew, have already issued their respective apologies.
Both Subhas and Preeti have also said sorry to the public over their rap video.
Later in the day, Preeti posted on Facebook to say that the case is now “closed.”
“Let’s hope we don’t see anymore painted faces and ‘offensive rap videos’ ever again,” she said.
“It sickens me when corporations get away with major screw-ups by doing the literal least – we see this all around the world and I guess this is no longer news to me anymore but we should all strive to be more accountable, both individually and as corporations.”