SINGAPORE: Allegations that police officers target Malays during security checks at MRT stations are baseless and untrue, said the Singapore Police Force (SPF) on Wednesday (Jul 10).
Its comments are in response to a video circulating online which shows officers conducting checks on a man at Bishan MRT station. A man is seen shouting and gesturing at a group of officers.
“There have been several comments made by netizens, stating that such checks were targeted at Malays,” said SPF in a Facebook post.
“Such allegations are untrue, baseless, irresponsible, and may stir up racial tensions," it added.
“The police take a stern view of persons who post remarks online that could cause ill-will and hostility between the different races or communities in Singapore, and they will be dealt with in accordance with the law.”
The incident shown in the video happened on Mar 5, said the police.
The officers involved are from SPF's Public Transport Security Command (TransCom), a unit set up to conduct patrols and random checks at public transport nodes.
"The majority of persons checked by the same team on that same shift were non-Malays," said SPF.
It added that such patrols are necessary to ensure that Singapore's public transport system remains crime free, and to deter possible acts of terror.
Last year, more than 720 arrests were made by TransCom officers.
The majority of the arrests were for serious offences, such as the possession of dangerous weapon and drugs, as well as having a warrant of arrest issued against them, said the police.
"The police would like to assure the public that our officers are impartial in their checks, and are trained to carry them out professionally," said SPF.
"We hope that the public can understand and appreciate the need for such checks, which ensures the safety and security of commuters, and will cooperate with the officers as they carry out their responsibility."