SINGAPORE: The Media Development Authority of Singapore on Wednesday (Sep 10) decided that local film director Tan Pin Pin's work To Singapore, With Love will be classified as "Not Allowed for All Ratings".
In its statement on Wednesday (Sep 10), MDA said it had assessed the contents of the film, and decided that it undermined national security. It added that legitimate actions taken by security agencies to protect the national security and stability of Singapore are distorted as acts that victimised innocent individuals.
"The individuals in the film have given distorted and untruthful accounts of how they came to leave Singapore and remain outside Singapore," the MDA stated. "A number of these self-professed 'exiles' were members of, or had provided support to, the proscribed Communist Party of Malaya (CPM)."
The documentary depicted different generations of Singaporean political exiles who have not been able to come home. Some have not returned for 50 years. Ms Tan sought to show how these exiles have lived their lives away and how they still viewed Singapore, according to the film's website.
Under the Film Classification Guidelines, films that are assessed to undermine national security will be given an NAR rating. This means the film is not for exhibition or distribution in Singapore.
"NO PUBLIC PLATFORM TO MISLEAD": DR YAACOB
Commenting on MDA's ruling, Minister for Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim said he had read the reasons for the decision and "agree and support their assessment".
"The individuals in the film have given distorted and untruthful accounts of how they left Singapore and claimed that they were unfairly denied their right to return to Singapore," said Dr Yaacob.
"The truth of the matter was that many of them, by their own admission, were members or supporters of the Communist Party of Malaya which sought to overthrow the legitimate elected governments of Singapore and Malaysia through armed struggle and subversion, and replace them with a communist regime," he added.
The minister said it is "not surprising" that ex-CPM members and sympathisers wish now to give their own accounts of historical episodes they were involved in.
"But individuals who have chosen to leave and remain outside Singapore, and refused to account for their past actions, should not enjoy a public platform to purvey distorted and untruthful accounts to mislead the public, absolve themselves or deny their past actions," Dr Yaacob stated.
For ex-CPM members and supporters who have returned to Singapore, acknowledge their actions and renounced Communism and violence, they and their families continued to live here and contribute to building Singapore, he added.