20 Aug 2005

Free speech and opposition parties in Singapore

This paper evaluates the use of free speech by opposition parties in Singapore. In particular, it looks at the impact, several key legislations such as the Public Entertainments and Meetings Act, the Defamation Act and Parliamentary Privileges, have on opposition party communication. Although cases of free speech restriction with regards to opposition parties and its members have received great publicity, in real terms the value of free speech for opposition parties in Singapore is limited. First, defamation laws in Singapore continue to extract caution from the opposition, creating a pressure within the opposition movement to ensure political comments do not result in defamation suits. Second, free speech in itself is politically not useful for opposition parties if the content in their free speech exercises are not disseminated by the local media. Hence both the fear of defamation suits and the limited dissemination of content in free speech exercises by the local media, keep the political value of free speech for opposition parties limited in Singapore. This has prompted one opposition leader to declare that perhaps non-violent civil disobedience may be a way to go. Thursday, 04 August 2005

by James Gomez

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That is great as they can voice their views in a peaceful way and non-violent and also their time to influence people to support them. But PAP is still my favourite