Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz has advised Filipinos working in Singapore to keep calm in the face of online protest to the celebration the Philippine Independence Day at Singapore’s Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza.
Last week, Singaporean journalist Kirsten Han raised the alarm on such anti-Filipino sentiments, warning that protesters are congregating on a Facebook page and are egging each other to disrupt the Philippine Independence day celebration in Singapore on June 8.
Han posted screenshots of online messages from Singaporeans spewing racial epithets at Filipinos.
Singapore Prime Minister has called for a stop to the slurs, saying the people behind them is a disgrace to Singapore.
Lee has called on Singaporeans to take a stand against bigotry.
“We call on our Filipino workers to be calm because as long as they have legitimate papers [allowing them to work in Singapore], their stay there is valid. We have to remember that foreign workers are [hired]in Singapore or in any other country because the government of the host country allows them to,” Baldoz told Radyo ng Bayan.
Based on Philippine government records, there are at least 170,000 Filipinos working in Singapore. Of this number, 60 percent are professional and skilled workers, while 40 percent are household service workers.
Hostility in Singapore toward Filipinos and other foreign workers surfaced in the mid 1990s during the deaths of Filipino household service workers Flor Contemplacion and Delia Maga.
Contemplacion was hanged after a Singaporean court convicted her of killing her friend Maga and Nicholas Huang, the three-year-old son of Maga’s employer. Witnesses for Contemplacion claimed that Huang accidentally died because of an epileptic attack while in the bathtub under Maga’s watch. As such, Huang’s father vented his ire at Maga and killed her.
It was Contemplacion who was blamed for the murders.