NUS Peeping Tom case

Monica Baey calls for online bullying against Nicholas Lim to stop

In Instagram post titled 'Closure', she says she's also glad that change 'has finally come'

National University of Singapore (NUS) undergraduate Monica Baey, who was filmed while showering, has taken to Instagram to call for the online harassment against her perpetrator to stop.

Her move comes nearly two weeks after her posts on the incident on the social media platform turned viral.

In an Instagram post on Wednesday titled "Closure", Ms Baey noted that change at the university is afoot, but also spoke out against those who disagreed with the way she shared her story as a victim of sexual assault.

On April 18, the 23-year-old expressed her frustration that NUS had not done more against fellow student Nicholas Lim, who filmed her in the shower at Eusoff Hall last November.

Mr Lim was given a 12-month conditional warning by the police and was suspended from school for a semester. He was also made to write an apology letter to her.

The Instagram stories, which revealed Mr Lim's name and personal details, quickly went viral and prompted the university to form a review committee to look closer at disciplinary and support frameworks.

It also organised a campus town hall meeting on April 25 attended by more than 600 students, including Ms Baey, who flew back to Singapore from her exchange programme in Taiwan.

 
 
 

NUS president Tan Eng Chye later apologised for falling short in providing support to victims of sexual misconduct, while Education Minister Ong Ye Kung called the current penalties "manifestly inadequate".

Describing it as "incredibly tiring, yet probably the most fulfilling week of my life", Ms Baey said on Wednesday that she is glad that "change has finally come".

However, she said that Mr Lim did not deserve to be bullied online for what he had done.

She also acknowledged that it was fair for some people to disagree with how she had brought the issue to light.

She wrote: "To address those who are saying that my perpetrator is now a victim, all I will say in response to that is I genuinely hope that he is receiving the proper support he needs to rehabilitate, and that the unnecessary online harassment towards him and his loved ones will stop."

Though she felt that Mr Lim had got away lightly, she added it would now be up to NUS and its review committee - not Internet users or even herself - to make the call on whether her case should be reopened and if tougher punishments should be meted out.

"I think it is time to step away from the discussion of what people think should be done to him, and step into the discussion of how we can improve our current society," she wrote.

In an exclusive interview with The Straits Times last week, Mr Lim said he was deeply remorseful for the incident and will continue to seek counselling and help to become a better person.

"I want to say that I have been and still am truly sorry for what I have done. Nobody should ever be put through the kind of trauma that I caused Monica. People have condemned me and my actions - I deserve it. I condemn myself. I seek everyone's forgiveness."

In her Instagram post, Ms Baey also opened up about her feelings of paranoia, confusion and disgust even months after the filming incident.

She ended her lengthy Instagram post by urging other victims of voyeurism to be courageous in speaking out.

She also hoped society could do more to protect victims and their reputation.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 03, 2019, with the headline 'Monica Baey calls for online bullying against Nicholas Lim to stop'. Print Edition | Subscribe