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Sengkang Member of Parliament Raeesah Khan today confessed to lying about personally accompanying a rape victim to a police station where an officer spoke inappropriately. 

Speaking today in Parliament, Khan, 27, retracted comments made in an earlier sitting that invited scrutiny from the powerful law minister and a threatened police investigation. Khan said that she had embellished a story heard in a support group for survivors and retold it without the victim’s consent. 

“I did not share that I was a part of the group, as I did not have the courage to publicly admit that I was part of it. I attended the support group because I myself am a survivor of sexual assault,” she said.

She apologized to lawmakers, her family, Sengkang residents, and fellow members of the opposition Workers’ Party for fabricating her role in the story.

Leader of the House Indranee Rajah has filed a complaint against Khan for breaching Parliamentary privileges and has referred the matter to an oversight committee she sits on with seven others including Law and Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam.

It was back in August when Khan recounted the story to demonstrate the need for better police training. Shanmugam later called her out, saying no evidence of such an encounter existed.

While delivering her confession, Khan said she was sexually assaulted while studying abroad when she was 18. 

“Unlike the survivor whose anecdote I shared in this house, I did not have the courage to report my own assault. Yet as a survivor I wanted so deeply to speak up and also share the account I had heard when speaking on the motion, without revealing my own private experience,” she added. 

“I should not have shared the survivor’s anecdote without her consent, nor should I have said that I accompanied her to the police station when I had not. It was wrong of me to do so.”

Khan was delivering a speech on women’s empowerment in August when she mentioned accompanying a 25-year-old sexual assault survivor to a police station three years ago. She said that the woman accused a police officer of making inappropriate comments about how she was dressed and whether she had been drinking. 

Last month, Shanmugam pressed Khan for more details about the incident, including the location of the police station, but she refused to divulge citing confidentiality and the risk of retraumatizing the victim. The minister said that the police could not find any record of Khan’s incident. 

Indranee noted in Parliament today that police had spent time and resources investigating her allegations. 

Other stories:

Sengkang MP Raeesah Khan to be questioned over police misconduct

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This article, Sengkang MP lied about her role in rape victim’s story, was also sex violence victim, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia’s leading alternative media company.


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