Committee of Privileges report on Raeesah Khan probe: Timeline of events since August

Ms Raeesah Khan speaking in Parliament on Nov 1, 2021, when she admitted to lying about the details of a sexual assault case. PHOTO: GOV.SG

SINGAPORE - The Committee of Privileges released its final report to Parliament on Thursday (Feb 10) over the complaint that was filed against former Workers' Party MP Raeesah Khan for lying in Parliament.

On Thursday, the committee recommended a $25,000 fine on Ms Khan for her untruth in Parliament on Aug 3 last year, and a $10,000 fine for her repeating of the untruth in Parliament on Oct 4.

It also recommended that WP chief and Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh be referred to the Public Prosecutor for further investigations. It had also done the same for WP vice-chairman Faisal Manap.

Here is a timeline of key events, based on conclusions that the committee reached in its report.

Aug 3: During a speech in Parliament, Ms Khan said she had accompanied a rape survivor to a police station to make a police report three years ago. She alleged the officer made comments on the victim's dressing and the fact that she had been drinking. Ms Khan declined to provide more details when pressed.

PHOTO: COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES
PHOTO: COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES
PHOTO: COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES
PHOTO: COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES

Aug 7: Ms Khan told WP chief Pritam Singh that she had lied in Parliament on Aug 3. She also told her secretarial assistant Loh Pei Ying and WP volunteer Yudhishthra Nathan about the untruth and called it one of the worst things she had done in her life.

A WhatsApp exchange between Ms Loh Pei Ying, Ms Raeesah Khan and Mr Yudhishthra Nathan on Aug 7. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES REPORT

Aug 8: Ms Khan confessed to all three senior WP leaders - Mr Singh, party chairman Sylvia Lim and Mr Faisal - and told them that she had lied in Parliament on Aug 3. She was told to continue with the lie, and if she were not pressed, to "retain the narrative that she began in August".

Specifically, Ms Khan claims, Mr Singh tells her to "take it to the grave".

Aug 10: Mr Singh met Ms Loh and Mr Nathan on a separate matter. He confirmed that he was aware of Ms Khan's Aug 3 lie.

Between Aug 8 and Oct 3: There was no further discussion between any of the three senior WP leaders - either among themselves, or with Ms Khan - about how and when to clarify the untruth, and no preparations were made to do so. This was consistent with the instructions that Ms Khan was given on Aug 8 to not pursue the matter further.

Oct 3: Mr Singh and his wife visited Ms Khan at her home. He told her the matter may arise in Parliament the next day and guided her towards continuing with the lie.

Mr Singh told Ms Khan that if she were to retain or continue with the narrative - the lie she had told - "there would be no judgment" on her.

Both Mr Singh and Ms Khan proceeded thereafter on the basis that she would repeat the lie, if the matter arose in Parliament, the committee said.

Oct 4: Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam pressed Ms Khan for details of the incident. When this happened, she texted Mr Singh to seek guidance again on what she should do, but he did not answer her immediately.

She repeated her lie and repeatedly declined to reveal any further details, citing confidentiality concerns.

Later that afternoon, Ms Lim met Ms Khan at about 3pm. She told Ms Khan to seek legal advice on any potential request by the police for assistance.

Mr Singh and Ms Lim met Ms Khan later at 11.15pm. Ms Khan suggested: "Perhaps there is another way. That is, to tell the truth." Neither Mr Singh nor Ms Lim told her to tell the truth.

A WhatsApp exchange between Ms Raeesah Khan and Mr Pritam Singh on Oct 4. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES REPORT

Oct 7: Ms Khan forwarded a police request to interview her to the three senior WP leaders. In the e-mail, she thanked the three of them for "guiding me through this without judgment".

Ms Raeesah Khan’s email dated Oct 7 to Mr Pritam Singh, Ms Sylvia Lim
and Mr Muhamad Faisal Bin Abdul Manap. PHOTOS: SCREENGRABS FROM COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES REPORT

Oct 12: By this date, Mr Singh and Ms Lim had concluded that the matter was not going to go away.

At a meeting with Ms Khan, Ms Lim and Mr Singh told her directly - for the first time - to clarify the truth in Parliament.

After the meeting, Ms Khan told Ms Loh and Mr Nathan that she had decided to clarify the truth, in accordance with Ms Lim and Mr Singh's latest guidance.

Ms Loh requested to meet Mr Singh to discuss what Ms Khan should say in Parliament, and how she should convey the truth.

Ms Loh and Mr Nathan met Mr Singh later that day. At the meeting, Mr Singh recounted that he told Ms Khan on Oct 3 that he had a feeling Ms Khan's Aug 3 statement might come up in Parliament again and she might be pressed about it.

He told Ms Khan, "I will not judge you". Ms Loh and Mr Nathan understood from Mr Singh that he had left it to Ms Khan, and she could continue with the lie.

Thereafter, Ms Khan worked with Mr Singh, Ms Lim, Ms Loh and Mr Nathan to prepare her clarification for Parliament. Her draft clarification was also reviewed by the WP's central executive committee.

Nov 1: Ms Khan clarified in Parliament that she had lied on Aug 3 and Oct 4. Leader of the House Indranee Rajah refers her to the Committee of Privileges.

A WhatsApp exchange between Ms Raeesah Khan and Mr Pritam Singh on Nov 1. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES REPORT

Mr Singh issued a statement on the same day, noting that Ms Khan's decision to set the record straight in Parliament was the correct thing to do. In the statement, there was no mention of the three leaders' involvement in or knowledge of the matter.

Nov 2: The WP forms a disciplinary panel - comprising Mr Singh, Ms Lim and Mr Faisal - to look into the matter. Party members were also invited to come forward to share their views.

Mr Pritam Singh’s WhatsApp message to the WP Central Executive Committee (CEC) on Nov 2. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM COMMITTEE OF PRIVILEGES REPORT

Nov 30: Ms Khan resigns from the WP.

SPH Brightcove Video
A parliamentary committee has recommended that former Workers’ Party MP Raeesah Khan be fined and Leader of the Opposition Pritam Singh be referred to the Public Prosecutor for their roles in lies told by Ms Khan in Parliament in August and October.

Dec 2, 3: Ms Khan and three other WP members - Ms Loh, legislative assistant Lim Hang Ling, and Mr Nathan - appear before the committee.

Dec 9: Mr Faisal appears before the committee.

Dec 10: Mr Singh appears before the committee.

Dec 13: Ms Lim appears before the committee, as does Sengkang GRC MP Jamus Lim.

Dec 15: Mr Singh is called back before the committee to submit further evidence.

Remote video URL

Dec 17 and 20: Ms Khan undergoes a psychiatric assessment with Dr Christopher Cheok, acting chief of the department of forensic psychiatry at the Institute of Mental Health and a psychiatrist by training.

Dec 22: Ms Khan is called back before the committee. Dr Cheok also testifies.

Feb 10: The Committee of Privileges releases its report to Parliament.

See the full report released by the Committee of Privileges.

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