SINGAPORE - The Religious Rehabilitation Group (RRG) is the first organisation to win the Berita Harian Achiever of the Year Award and on Tuesday night, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong described as invaluable their work over the last 10 years in countering extremist ideology and helping to keep Singapore safe.
Sportswoman Saiyidah Aisyah Mohammed Ra'fee won this year's Berita Harian Inspiring Young Achiever Award. She overcame several obstacles, including a lack of financial support, to win a gold medal for rowing at last December's Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar.
Speaking at the gala awards dinner, Mr Lee said the work of the RRG continues to be important, with the conflicts in Syria and Iraq feeding a terrorist narrative that has drawn thousands of foreign fighters from around the world.
The effects are being felt globally as people are becoming self radicalised through what they see and read online.
A few Singaporeans have gone to the Middle East to join the fight while others were planning to go when stopped by the authorities.
"The danger is that they learn the techniques of terrorism, they are infected with this radical ideology, and they forge an international brotherhood of fighters and produce a new generation of terrorists," said Mr Lee.
The RRG, he added, offers a robust ideological counter to the jihadists.
He thanked members of the group for giving of their time and putting in tremendous effort in this battle for hearts and minds.