Singapore Parliament’s privileges committee will continue looking into Raeesah Khan's conduct, despite her resignation as MP

Raeesah Khan admitted in Parliament on November 1, 2021 that she lied about the alleged experience of a sexual assault victim being treated insensitively at a police station. — TODAY pic
Raeesah Khan admitted in Parliament on November 1, 2021 that she lied about the alleged experience of a sexual assault victim being treated insensitively at a police station. — TODAY pic

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SINGAPORE, Dec 1 — Parliament’s Committee of Privileges will continue looking into the conduct of Raeesah Khan, the Workers’ Party Member of Parliament (MP) who resigned yesterday, for lying in the House over a sexual assault case.

In a press statement on Wednesday, the office of the Clerk of Parliament said that its privileges committee would present its report to Parliament “in due course”.

Raeesah, who was with the Sengkang Group Representation Constituency, had resigned from the Workers’ Party as well as her position as MP.

The Parliament clerk’s office said that Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin received Raeesah’s resignation letter at about 10.45pm on Tuesday.

“Members of Parliament were informed of Raeesah’s resignation on December 1, 2021,” the office added.

On November 1, Raeesah admitted in Parliament that she lied about the alleged experience of a sexual assault victim being treated insensitively at a police station.

She claimed that she had accompanied the victim there when she had not.

She merely heard about the alleged account at a women’s support group that she attended.

Raeesah disclosed that she did not want to say then that she was attending the group session, because she was a survivor of a sexual assault herself and “did not have the courage to publicly admit that I was part of it”.

Leader of the House Indranee Rajah later referred Raeesah’s conduct to Parliament’s privileges committee, which looks into complaints alleging breaches of parliamentary privilege.

The Committee of Privileges, formed at the start of each parliamentary term, is made up of seven MPs and chaired by Tan.

The committee produces a report at the end of its probe, which can recommend punitive measures against those who violate parliamentary privilege.

Being referred to the committee can result in heavy penalties. Under the Parliament (Privileges, Immunities and Powers) Act, the House is empowered to:

  • Jail or suspend an MP who breached his or her privilege until the end of the current parliamentary term 
  • Fine the MP a maximum of S$50,000
  • Reprimand the MP
  • Suspend the privilege and immunity of the MP in respect of liability in civil proceedings — TODAY

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