Temasek has released a statement denouncing a "divisive, racist" social media campaign targeted at its employees from India, citing false claims made against the hiring of this group of employees.

In response to these claims, the company stated: "This makes us very angry at the false claims perpetuated. The Singaporeans among us are also ashamed at such hateful behaviour on the Singapore social media.

"We stand by our colleagues who have been dragged into this through no fault of their own."

The firm also noted that it builds its team on an open policy, "regardless of the colour of our skin, or the colour of our passports."

"At the Board level, we have outstanding individuals from around the world, giving us their time and sharing with us their expertise and experience as our Board members."

The statement then went on to cite that among the firm's workforce, its diversity spans 32 nationalities, across offices in eight countries. In each office, including Singapore, locals form the "vast majority"; Among the 600 employees at the Singapore HQ, 90% are Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents (PRs), and this remains "broadly the same" among the senior leadership (managing directors and above).

Globally, it added, the nationality mix is about 60% Singaporeans and 40% other nationals, including about 10% Singapore PRs. 

Apart from Singaporeans, the top five nationalities include from China (9%), the USA (7%), India (6%), the UK (3%), and Malaysia (3%).

"We encourage mobility as a way of developing our talent, both between functions and across geographies. We will continue to provide opportunities for our Singaporean colleagues to broaden their experiences and build their leadership capabilities globally, as we also do for our locally-engaged staff in our overseas offices by supporting relevant assignments for them to work in our Singapore headquarters or in our other offices."

"We know that the social media can be a force for good or bad. We believe there is a role for constructive debate and fact-based opinions in our society, even on contentious or sensitive topics, and even on social media. That should be balanced with civility and respect for others.

"There is no place whatsoever for racism to feature in these debates. Insidious posts designed to stir hatred and intolerance have no place in our society, and we denounce them."

The firm has since referred the posts to Facebook as in clear breach of their own community guidelines on hate speech, and will "continue to press them to be more active in stamping out such hate speech, wherever it occurs on their platforms."

The statement concluded: "Social media involves people airing views different to ours: that’s their prerogative. However, all of us stand together as oneTemasek against views that seek to perpetrate division and disrupt the social cohesion that has taken many years for us to achieve here in Singapore."

Photo / 123RF

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