Monday, February 29, 2016

The Lee Family's Singapore Island, a place that looks modern but no human rights

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The tiny Singapore island, at the tip of the Malay Peninsula has to be the most enigmatic place that could ever be. On the one hand, anyone going there would be forgiven if he thought it is a modern city like any other. It has skyscrapers, good roads, modern shopping complexes, a great many millionaires, a modern airport and a modern sea port.

On the other hand, if he stayed long enough and spoke to the locals, he would find the other mysterious dark side of that island. It has no human rights at all! None at all! You might as well be living in North Korea. There is only one difference between North Korea and Singapore. You cannot escape from North Korea but you can from Singapore.

I am going to list here how the citizens of the island of Singapore live with no rights at all.

1. If the police arrest you, you have no right to a lawyer. You are allowed a lawyer only after you have confessed your crime to the police. The Singapore Criminal Procedure Code states that a criminal defendant is entitled to a lawyer only after the police have completed their investigation. What this means is that when the police arrest you, you have no right to a lawyer. You are not read your rights because you have none. The police interrogate you without any lawyer being present. The interrogation can take weeks or even months while you are held in indefinite custody where you are interrogated. With sufficient torture, primarily sleep deprivation and threats, sooner or later you will confess. At that precise moment, the police, conveniently, declare their investigations as completed. You are then politely told that you can look for a lawyer. By then of course, it is too late. You have already confessed. The court will use your confession and promptly find you guilty. Chapter closed. Off you go to the Lee family's prison.

2. Unlike as in other democracies, you have no right to silence. When the police arrest and interrogate you, you must answer. If you say that you would rather be silent, the court will treat that as an admission of guilt and you will once again be convicted.

3. Singapore's judges are carefully selected by the Lee Family who run the island for their loyalty to the regime. Whenever any political opponent is charged with offenses to destroy them, which happens routinely, the work is done by these judges who are required to convict and deliver stiff sentences. The purpose of these political trials is to destroy and remove opponents to their regime.

4. Although the Government of Singapore run by the Lee family will deny it, the truth is the entire island is at the beck and call of the Lee family, today run by the son of the late Lee Kuan Yew, Lee Hsien Loong. A word from him to any government department or any judge will mean the end of you, the end of your career, and the end of any meaningful life in his island. Therefor everyone who lives there understands that any attempt to openly question their authority will mean the end of you. As a result the people of the island willingly submit to their total authority without question, regardless of how unjust the rules under which they live.

5. The entire media in the island, including newspapers, television, radio are all owned and controlled by the state. No independent media is allowed to circulate in the island. The foreign newspapers who are allowed to sell there are required to post bonds of several hundreds of thousands of dollars to the state. This money is to ensure that in the event they criticize the government, they would have enough money to pay in court damages in defamation lawsuits, which usually runs in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, which the state will bring in their Kangaroo Courts.

6. Although the Constitution of Singapore allows freedom of speech, this is denied by this regime. Anyone hoping to make a public speech is required to apply for a police permit. If you do, it will be denied. And if you went ahead and spoke anyway, you will be charged for speaking without a permit and sent to prison. There is a spot called Speakers Corner. Even there permission is required before hand.

7. Although the Constitution allows freedom of assembly, this is denied by this regime. if you wish to peacefully protest in public, you are required to apply for a police permit from the regime. if you do, it will be denied. And if you went ahead and peacefully protested anyway, you will be arrested and sent to prison for protesting without a permit. You can do it is Speakers Corner, but again you require permission.

8. This regime denies granting passports to anyone they choose. As a result thousands of people who are seen to be critical of the government are unable to leave the island because they cannot get a passport. They are literally prisoners in their own island. This is a grave violation of a fundamental human right guaranteed by the United nations.

9. There are many articles written about the dire state under which the citizens of the island live and as a result many educated and discerning citizens are leaving for settlement abrioad, the rate of mass emigration which is one of the greatest per capita in the world. The population of the island being tiny, one would have thought this government would want to ensure their best educated would appreciate their country and remain. Apparently they don't seem to care much about the brain drain, which has resulted in almost all the top echelon of the educated opting to emigrate to the West, leaving behind only those who are ignorant of their rights or those lacking the necessary qualifications to emigrate. This constant and ever increasing brain drain is resulting in the quality of the ordinary Singaporean progressively diminishing.

10. To compensate the brain drain problem, the island brings in plane loads of immigrants from China but they are vastly inferior to the Singaporeans who have left or are leaving, mainly because none of them know any English, the working language in the island. Other than immigrants from Communist China or India, there are not many people from the West who would chose to come to the island due to its bad reputation for being another North Korea.

11. Even though many in the island know they live without any rights, one does not see any protest or dissension against this regime. This is because the ones who chose to stay are people who are literally willing to live as slaves as long as they can survive. This does not speak much to the quality of the people who live there, as no one with any self respect would willingly choose to put up with this nonsense.

12. Although anyone with any self respect would be ashamed to call such a place home, there are many foreign banks and financial institutions who employ foreigners to work in the island. Their situation is of course not the same as that of any local citizen. They are there to make money as they would do in for instance Dubai. They do not care if the island has any human rights or if the place is run by a donkey. As with the foreign banks, there are many foreign companies who have their headquarters there. It is the same for them as the foreign bankers. They too don't care how the place is run or anyone has any rights. They are foreigners and their countries are foreign, not Singapore.

Please distribute this article widely among your friends and connections. It is important that more and more people begin to see the dark side of Singapore or the real Singapore. We want to see the end of this regime and with the island being so heavily connected with China, it is likely that it will see a real collapse of its economy in the near future. Being so small even a minor change for the worse in the status quo, could mean a total collapse of the regime or at least a big step in that direction. You can help by spreading this news and distributing articles such as these. Once again thank you.

Gopalan Nair
Attorney at Law
A Singaporean in Exile
Fremont (San Francisco) California USA
Tel: 510 491 8525

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