Monday, August 29, 2011

Lest We Forget - A Politically Apolitical President

I would like to congratulate PM Lee Hsien Loong. With the ascent of Tony Tan as 7th president of Singapore, he can sleep easier. Had Tan Cheng Bok won, he would have to look for a new office! Heck, if Tan Jee Say won, the next National Day Parade would most likely be re-orchestrated or even cancelled! Can you imagine LKY, GCT and LHL standing and waiting (all in white) for President Tan Jee Say to arrive at NDP . . . the thought is hilarious (priceless?) to "cowboys in the lunatic fringe" but must have caused much insomnia to those whiter-than-white!

As much as PE is over, I'm sure Singaporeans especially those from the "lunatic fringe" in "cowboy towns" are still anxious to know why Patrick's NS was disrupted for 12 years. [Link] Instead of burying the case, I believe that the statement by Tony's 3 sons saying that the allegations are lies [Link] has created more resentful indignation. If only they had make a police report of the lies, they would have reminded me of the sad departure of Tang Liang Hong from Singapore. [Link] and [Link]

Remember Pianist Melvin Tan?
According to Teo Chee Hean,"Melvyn Tan left Singapore at age 12 in 1969 to study music at the Yehudi Menuhin School in England. In 1974, when he was 17, he won a Foundation Scholarship, jointly funded by the Straits Times Press, Nanyang Siang Pau and the Lee Foundation, to further his music studies at the Royal College of Music. As the course would take him beyond the enlistment age of 18, he applied for and was granted deferment from National Service for three years, after his parents furnished a bond of $30,000.

However, Melvyn Tan failed to return after his deferment period ended. Instead, he requested further deferment to pursue a Masters degree in music. The request was rejected, as we did not allow further deferment for postgraduate studies. When Melvyn Tan failed to enlist for full-time National Service after his deferment period was over and his exit permit had expired, the bond his parents furnished was forfeited and he was gazetted as an NS defaulter." [Link]

If the treatment accorded to Patrick Tan "preserve(s) its fairness and equity", I would expect MINDEF to be forthcoming in answering the following:
  1. If "we did not allow further deferment for postgraduate studies", why was Patrick Tan (the son of the then Minister of Defence) treated so special?
  2. Apart from Patrick, was there any other NSman given a 12 year disruption in Service?
  3. Apart from Patrick, was there any other NSman given the same vocation?
  4. What was the vocation code of Patrick when he was serving his NS?
  5. How many months did Patrick actually do his NS in a typical Army Camp?
  6. Did he serve his RT in normal army camp and, if he did, how many cycles did he do?
  7. Compared to peasants and heartlanders who risked their lives and limbs for Singapore, was the treatment accorded Patrick Tan "fair and equitable"?
In the same [Link] as above, Ministerial Statement on National Service Defaulters, Minister for Defence Teo Chee Hean stated: "Mr Speaker, Sir, National Service remains critical for our national survival. Singaporeans serve willingly out of a sense of duty, and also a sense that the system is fair. Every citizen does his part, and nobody can dodge his responsibility to serve without severe legal and social sanctions. The Government will strenuously uphold the National Service system, and preserve its fairness and equity. This is essential to maintain the commitment that Singaporeans have shown over four decades of National Service."

If the President is apolitical, is HDB apolitical? Is PA (Peoples' Association) non-political too?
Are the heads of HDB and PA civil servants? If they are, it is revulsive that they would throw away their integrity and degrade their position to bring dishonour to the civil service of Singapore just to please their masters and preserve their jobs! What HDB has done in granting 26 sites in Aljunied Hougang GRC to PA without informing the rightful MPs of WP amounts to daylight robbery! Threatening not to upgrade HDB blocks if residents voted for opposition to win votes by GCT was repugnant but to 'steal' (lease) 'community activities' sites from a legitimate Town Council to PA by HDB is criminal! [Link]

Tony Tan has mentioned that he would look into this matter and we hope he does. The PEC has stated that he is "of integrity, good character and reputation". Come 1 September 2011, he has to walk the talk. If we hear 'the sound of silence' from him on this matter, we would then know that the sense of justice, equality and fairplay that's the core values of decent human and/or society is not with him!

"Fools", said I, "You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you"
But my words, like silent raindrops fell
And echoed
In the wells of silence . . .

Simon & Garfunkel



At August 30, 2011 at 9:14 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Fish.
I wish our MP can write like you - with full of sense of justice and fair play. Well, how can an Elected President be "apolitical" when election is a political process for citizens to express a social choice!

At August 30, 2011 at 2:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm surprised so few Singaporeans took notice.

SR Nathan revealed that Singapore's reserves have been used at least 27 times since 2002.

Definition of a Diplomat:
A man who knows how to say nothing in 5 different languages.

At August 30, 2011 at 2:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i never doubt for one moment TonyTan, HoChing, Oldfart, Ah Loong are all one big happy familee running GIC and Temasek.

now that TonyTan will become the PAP phony President officially, Tony may as well invite Ah Loong and HC to live in the Istana, sleep on the same bed to make things even more cosy.

honestly Fish, i can't believe i will live this long to see such an obscene arrangement, courtesy of the dumb ass 60%

At August 30, 2011 at 4:37 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those who praise the PAP Government simply ignore the double standards that are being practised.

Sad that they centre their lives around materialism.

Mr Fish, IMHO there should be more free space for the common folks.

At August 31, 2011 at 8:46 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Fish,

After reading the link of TT's son explaination on his NS, i'm wondering, can a commissioned officer be demoted to a 3rd Sgt? Since he went for OCS, he should be commissioned, then why is he a 3rd Sgt during his ICT and such.

But anyway, the article is very well written. Do to see more article like such, and to see more singaporeans think like-wise.

At August 31, 2011 at 4:45 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tony & sons said the statements about their NS stints are lies; then they should sue.They are experts at sue-ing. This matter should not be put to rest until there is a proper explanation by them & Mindef.Dr Allan Ooi who committed suicide in Melbourne some yrs ago cdn't even get a different posting when he was in Mindef.

At October 26, 2011 at 7:09 PM , Anonymous said...

This cannot work in fact, that is what I consider.

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