Racial slurs vs Filipinos in Singapore isolated, says DFA
MANILA, Philippines—Blog posts promoting discrimination against Filipinos in Singapore is isolated and that Filipinos remain an important part of the city-state economy, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Friday.
“Our compatriots there know they are important to the eyes of the Singaporean government and their contributions to the Singaporean economy have been recognized,” DFA spokesman Charles Jose told reporters in response to questions about discrimination in the country.
“Those kinds of attitudes are likely isolated to a small number of Singaporeans who don’t have the full appreciation or understand of the role of Filipinos there,” he said.
A blogger said in a post on May 24, 2014 that “Filipinos have long overstayed their welcome, and they must be advised in no less clearer terms that we are growing intolerant of their presence.”
The blogger, who did not identify himself, gave suggestions on how to express displeasure against Filipinos such as: refusing to talk to Filipino service workers and asking for a Singaporean instead and “pushing or nudging” them “when the Peenoise get rowdy or obviously do not observe basic social decorum.”
He also recommended not helping any Filipino involved in a serious accident and to make a mess when eating at Jollibee or any Filipino themed restaurant.
“Toss food into your mouth, chew thoroughly, then spit it out. Bite another morsel and repeat. Do this till your plate is a masterpiece of regurgitated nastiness. Ask for the bill (pay in cash), scribble ‘Pinoy food fucking tastes like shit’ on the receipt and remember to leave that piece of paper behind,” the blog said.
Recently, the Philippine Independence Day celebrations in Singapore on June 8, 2014 organized by the Filipino Community there was cancelled due to fears that violence could break out.
A previous blogger also posted a complaint about noisy Filipinos riding in buses and recommended that a separate bus be assigned just for them.
Hard working, caring, friendly
A British citizen, married to a Filipina, wrote an open letter to Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in response to the blog post.
Malcolm Conlan defended Filipinos in his letter saying “The overwhelming majority of the Filipino people are a hardworking, caring, friendly, happy people who wish no harm to any other people or nation.”
“Having visited the Philippines on more than 30 occasions and being married to a Filipina, as well as working with Filipinos and engaging with them for over 20 years, I believe I am qualified to give my opinion,” he said.
Conlan noted with “grave concern” the intentions of the blogger to “drive Filipinos out of the country” by launching a “campaign of hate.”
He admitted that he has never been to Singapore and is not aware of the culture or the laws against discrimination in Singapore
“I am not aware of the laws on discrimination in Singapore, however I do not believe that blogs like this give the Singaporean people a good image, I seek your further reassurance that the Filipino people are not subject to any form of discrimination whilst working in your country,” Conlan asked the Prime Minister.
There are more than 180,000 Filipinos in Singapore, according to December 2012 records of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.