SINGAPORE: A Malaysian actor recently got into trouble with Singaporeans for remarks he made on a TV show, to the point of receiving unhappy messages from them.

The 37-year-old actor made comments that irked Singaporeans, such as when he called Singapore “too boring” and said tourists should only plan for two- or three-day visits. Attractions such as Gardens by the Bay, Jewel’s Rain Vortex, and Siloso Beach are also called “man-made” by Mr Tai. He then went on to even call the Singaporean guests “man-made as well.”

What may have been the worst was when he claimed that “All the Singapore food that you know of are stolen from Malaysia,” including chicken rice, char kway teow, bak kut teh, and nyonya kueh. Ouch.

He even asked people from Taiwan who were on the show to name food from Singapore, to which they answered barley drink, crab dishes, and pandan cake. However, Mr Tai debunked this and told them they were also from Malaysia.

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After backlash from Singaporeans, including when he was called an “attention seeker looking for his 10 minutes of fame” and a “typical sour grape”, the actor has said sorry. He was quoted as telling The New Paper, “I sincerely apologize to any Singaporeans whom I’ve upset.”

He also explained that the footage aired of his comments had been edited and explained the show’s format.

“The entire episode was about two groups of people ‘attacking’ each other purely for entertainment purposes. It looked like I was very dissatisfied with Singapore, but it was really just a performance to suit the entertainment programme.”

As for the comments he received, the actor also said, “I hope that both the Internet and the real world can be filled with more love and peace. I will pay more attention to future performances, but remain true to myself. I will still work hard to do my part as an artiste and strive to pursue good work.” /TISG

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