Forbes Vietnam removes man from Under 30 list following harassment allegations

By Manh Tung   February 24, 2022 | 03:09 am PT
Ngo Hoang Anh, 22, has been removed from the Forbes Vietnam Under 30 list, the magazine announced Thursday.

"Regarding the case of Ngo Hoang Anh, after carefully considering all aspects of the issue, including the inspirational spirit of the list and Ngo Hoang Anh's wishes in an email sent to the magazine, Forbes Vietnam decided to withdraw him from the 2022 Under 30 list."

"We announced that the 2022 Forbes Vietnam 30 Under 30 list now has 25 people," Forbes Vietnam wrote on Facebook.

It is not clear what Anh had written in his email to Forbes Vietnam.

The Forbes list published on Feb. 14 honors Anh in the field of science and education.

But it drew backlashes, especially after the High School for the Gifted in Ho Chi Minh City where he used to study congratulated him on Facebook.

The post quickly stirred up debate after many former female students at the school accused him of sexual harassment.

Most of the victims said when they were still studying at the school, Anh used to often text them, using many "sensitive and sexually explicit" words.

The school removed the post and made a public apology on Saturday, in which Vice Principal Tran Nam Dung said the school had been "careless" when publishing the Forbes Under 30 information since it inadvertently affected former students who had spoken out about his behavior in 2020.

Speaking to VnExpress via a representative, Anh explained two cases in which two women has used his text messages as evidence to accuse him of sexual harassment.

He said his relationship with one of the women was "more than friends" and that they usually shared with each other the most personal stories of their lives. For the second case, he said they both had feelings for each other and as they could not go further, that woman had later used the text message "as evidence against me."

He said he and his lawyer will send all the "uncut" messages and relevant files to related authorities and consider taking legal measures according to Vietnam's law. He also sends an apology to his teachers, friends and former students at the High School for the Gifted, Forbes Vietnam and his colleagues.

Anh is studying for a master’s degree in statistical epidemiology at the Medical School of the University of Edinburgh in the U.K. He had formerly gained outstanding achievements during his term at the High School for the Gifted.

The Forbes Vietnam 30 Under 30 listing has been honoring Vietnamese youth in several areas including businesses and startups, science and education, social activities, art, entertainment and sports.

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