Monday, December 31, 2012

Singapore. The danger of a by election in Pongoll East.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Singapore is a tiny island nation with no more than about 2.5 million native born and another 2.5 million foreigners.

Pongoll East constituency, an electoral district in Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore has become vacant with the removal of their Speaker of Parliament who was caught with his pants down, having extra marital affairs with an ethnic Chinese woman who also worked for Lee Kuan Yew's government party, the PAP.

As Singapore is supposed to follow British Parliamentary practice under the law- which by the way is nonsense, as Singapore is a Lee Kuan Yew dictatorship while the UK is a great democracy- because UK has an unwritten constitution, and although customs and long practice would expect the Prime Minister to hold elections in a vacant seat, there is really nothing expressly stated which requires it.  

Conveniently our Singaporean prince, Lee Kuan Yew's son, has naturally repeated this fact, that they are not bound under law to hold any elections.

But in the present political atmosphere where several of their so called Singapore opposition politicians- I say so called because they usually remain dormant for the 5 years between elections doing or saying nothing mainly out of fear of the dictator and suddenly surface at election time- have openly stated their desire to contest in the event of a by election, it would be hard even on Lee's totalitarian government to deny holding one.

If they do hold elections in this ward, here lies the danger.

The Workers Party might win.

You may be surprised at this statement since I am after all against the incumbent government which as been there for the last 50 years or so, another Cuba with free trade you may say, why then should I fear the Workers Party since after all, are they not opposition too?

But that is the problem.

No they are not opposition at all.

They are PAP disguised as opposition and have been in Parliament, not to fight for the people's democracy but to masquerade as one by asking questions and doing nothing else.

This is what I think has happened.

Lee Kuan Yew, whom you can say is too smart for his own good, or to put it better, too smart by half; had decided that since the trend on the ground with the invention of the Internet and mass communication is to want more opposition, why not give them one after all.

So he got the Workers Party to give the impression that they are opposition at elections by making as much noise as possible at election time only to do nothing after they got their seats.

This way, Lee thought he has got it both ways; the people are happy thinking they got opposition, while he is happy because they are not any threat to him.

I fear if Lee's son were to call elections, the Workers Party would once again win because the people have, unfortunately, been sufficiently hoodwinked into thinking that they are the genuine product.

Frankly it is not that it would make any difference anyway.

Singapore is literally a one party state and will continue to be one for a long time until the people are prepared to get up from their backsides and do something about it.

Lee has as many as 81 seats in Parliament and the miserable opposition (which by the way is in fact PAP) is a mere 6.

It wouldn’t make any difference either this election, or the next one or the next 50 years if something drastic is not done.

Yes, you understood what I said.

I mean a revolution.

That is what it takes to bring about real change.

Pongoll East is of no consequence at all on the political climate of Singapore, a one party totalitarian police state which deports, imprisons, bankrupts and ruins political critics through a corrupt compliant judiciary.

But other than a revolution, what will also bring about change, or shall I say chaos to the island is the fast approaching demise of the 91 year old dictator.

Like all other dictators around the world, he made sure that Singapore does not have a political culture at all, with the average Singaporean showing no interest at all in politics.

To put it correctly, politics in Singapore is more like a profession.

If you like it, you apply to Lee Kuan Yew, and if selected, he will give you various jobs such as helping out in his branch political organizations.

If you show sufficient loyalty and hard work, he may promote you to higher positions.

And you from then on, you will spend an entire career, like a dog, running around and doing his bidding.

Other than this path, there is no other way for anyone aspiring into politics.

The population’s job is simply to obey what these people say.

The ones who rule the island are hand picked minions who have passed school examinations and then deployed throughout the government to do the job.

As every one of them needs a leader to follow, the eventuality of their sole leader dying has never been given any thought whatsoever.

The dictator's son, whom you may call the prince and the entire cabinet and high ranking officers are not leaders of men by any stretch of the word.

They govern under the authority and license of their supreme dictator and without one; they are hard pressed for legitimacy of office.

They don't derive legitimacy by reason of the Constitution of the island because that document which is supposed to lay the basis of all government has been reduced to a worthless piece of paper with every single individual right roundly ignored.

Without the Constitution to provide the basis for government, what you have left is a mere gang of men chosen by Lee Kuan Yew to rule over the island in any way they chose.

They are allowed to racially discriminate, they are allowed to deny the rule of law, to deny workers rights, to arrest anyone they pleased on trumped up charges and anything else they wanted.

To put it bluntly, Lee Kuan Yew and his men are simply above the law.

This is not something that can last.

The people through the Internet and mass media are already aware of their plight.

This is manifested in the country's almost non existent birth rate (the lowest in the world), the mounting rates of emigration to the West of the skilled and educated and the fast dying large old age population.

I reckon once the 91 year old dictator dies, you would have mayhem, literally so.

There is no one who would have sufficient authority or credibility to claim leadership.

Chee Soon Juan has been labeled a criminal and so have many others who may have the ability to lead.

Moreover since everything is in the hands of Lee and Company, even the government owned apartment that you live in, regardless of what Chee or any other opposition politician my say, they really are not in a position to solve anything, as the reins remain with the Lee family government.  

As for Lee's minions, they are all of the type of Michael Palmer, the half ethnic Chinese minister who was recently fired.

He has in an instant disappeared from the political scene and no one gives him a second look now, the same fate that every other former Lee Kuan Yew minion has faced.  

I am not sure if the foreign community is aware of the precarious situation that the island is in with the dictator now having reached 91, and whether the Singaporeans themselves are themselves packing with their families and bank balances to a safe destination off shore.

If they are not now doing it, perhaps they should start.

It is better to be cautions.

The island with only about 2.5 million local born depending on another 2.5 million foreigners to run the place, is far too tiny to withstand the shock of the all powerful Lee Kuan Yew's death.

Gopalan Nair
Attorney at Law
A Singaporean in exile
Fremont, California, USA
Tel: 510 491 4375

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