Racism Or Lack Of Education?

On Sunday night, Ms Hemma Balakrishnan ordered hokkien mee from the Geylang Lorong 29 Charcoal Fried Hokkien Mee stall at East Coast.

When she went back to the shop to collect her order, the stall uncle allegedly said,

Female, black. Na, this one’s yours.

Hearing this, Ms Balakrishnan assumed that the stall had gotten the order wrong and that it had given her black carrot cake instead. To her surprise, she found a packet of hokkien mee, just as she had ordered.

It then dawned on her that the “black” wasn’t a reference to soy sauce–it referred to her race and skin colour.

She shared her experience in a Facebook post that has since sparked a discussion about racism and education in Singapore.

What others said

Netizens questioned what motivated the uncle to write “Female/Black” on the plastic bag. Some blamed it on a lack of education.


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But others rubbished this idea, calling his actions “blatant racism” instead.


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One netizen even pledged to boycott the famous shop.

Eye on the prize

Sensing the tension in the comment thread, some netizens decided to make light of the situation.

One asked rather innocently if the hokkien mee in question tasted any good. To this, Ms Balakrishnan replied,

Hahha yes it did :). Not the best I have had but pretty decent!

Another joked that the stall’s way of identifying customers had its flaws.

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Featured image from Facebook