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Ng Hui Wen
The Straits Times
July 30, 2019
The police are investigating an online rap video allegedly containing offensive content that was made in response to a recent advertisement by e-payments website epaysg.com.
The rap video, which features local YouTuber Preeti Nair and her brother, rapper Subhas Nair, was posted on Facebook and YouTube on Monday (July 29).
In a statement on Tuesday, the police said they are aware of the video and a report against it has been lodged.
"The police will not tolerate any offensive content that causes ill will between races," the police said.
The video was taken down from Facebook and other social media channels on Tuesday afternoon.
Ms Nair's video was made in response to an advertisement featuring Mediacorp actor and DJ Dennis Chew portraying characters such as a woman in a tudung and a man with visibly darker skin.
Better known by her public persona Preetipls, Ms Nair has gained popularity in recent years for her online videos in which she often takes a stab at popular culture and social issues. Her brother, Subhas, started making music some time in 2018.
Chew was pictured as four characters - apparently a Chinese man and woman, a Malay woman wearing a tudung, and, with his skin darkened, an Indian man.
The ad was created for epaysg.com, an e-payments website.
A tweet from the account of Ms Ruby Thiagarajan, editor-in-chief of Mynah Magazine, an annual publication, slammed the advertisement last Friday.
The tweet, which captured a picture of the ad, read: "Brownface in a Singaporean ad in 2019. I thought we already went over this..."
The ad had drawn polarised opinions, ranging from anger to praise for its apparent depiction of racial togetherness. Some people felt that it was in poor taste.
Broadcaster Mediacorp, through its celebrity management wing, later apologised for the advertisement. The epaysg.com website later removed the controversial advertisement.
Ms Nair's video was filmed in front of the advertisement and included this phrase: "How come you so jealous of the colour of my skin?" The clip also contains profanities.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the video has received more than 1,100 likes and 110 comments.