Thursday, 3 May 2018

3 veteran ministers step down for 4G leaders

Update 10 Jul 2018: Lee Hsien Loong has yet to identify a clear successor – but what about Ho Ching?

While the lack of an identifiable successor for next Premiership has concerned Singaporeans, another critical entity – Temasek Holdings – also seems to face a lack of a successor.

According to the Government, the national investment entity manages $198 billion of our reserves. The weight of this organization was also emphasized by former Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, who said in Parliament that the government has a clear interest in Temasek continuing to have strong leadership, so that it can deliver good returns over the long term”.

Yet, there appears to be no successor for Ho Ching who has been Temasek’s CEO since 2002. While we have no details as to when the search for her successor started, some reference can be made to a Parliamentary response which stated that Temasek’s Board and the current CEO Ho Ching has “set about the process of CEO succession review since 2005”.

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Ho Ching Temasek CEO, Nearly a decade after failed leadership succession plans

The head of Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund is a familiar face to many and interest in the fund’s chief executive has always been rife, considering that she is also Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s wife.

This year, Ho Ching will complete 16 years at Temasek. She joined the organisation, then called Temasek Holdings, as a director in January 2002 before she was promoted to executive director just four months later, in May. Two years after she joined Temasek, Ho Ching became its Chief Executive Officer on 1 January 2004 – a role she has held for the past 14 years.

Interestingly, next year (2019) will not only mark a decade and a half since Ho Ching took the reins of Temasek, it will also mark a decade after leadership succession plans for a new CEO to replace Ho Ching fell through in a boardroom bust-up in 2009 – just three months before the new CEO was supposed to take over.


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Bye, bye: Lim Swee Say, Yaacob Ibrahim & Lim Hng Kiang retire from Cabinet

The latest Cabinet reshuffle will see three ministers retire from Cabinet from May 1, 2018. Here’s what the Cabinet will miss about them:
  • Lim Hng Kiang - Possibly one of the most low-key politicians in the modern era, Lim rose up the ranks, first in the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) and then through various statutory boards and ministries before taking the lead at the Ministry of Trade and Industry in 2004. As Health Minister in 2003, Lim received flak during the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak for his slow response, which might have led the economy into a recession. When questioned in Parliament if the government can do more to help women go for breast-cancer screening, PAP Minister Lim Hng Kiang said, “Save on one hairdo and use the money for breast-cancer screening.”
  • Lim Swee Say - Arguably the most personable one among the three, Lim is known to connect with the working masses. He led the National Trade Union Congress (NTUC) as its Secretary-General for one whole decade before going over to the Manpower Ministry in 2015. His time working with the labour movement brought out some of his quirkiest quotes in his push to enhance the working man’s quality of life such as “Better, Betterer, and Betterrest”, “Upturn the Downtown” & “Be a Nation of Bottleneck-Breakers”
  • Yaacob Ibrahim - Yaacob was perhaps most well-known for that infamous “once-every-50-years-flood” quote, after the Bukit Timah canal burst its banks in 2009. As minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs, Yaacob was also the one we see trotting out with the assurances each time a religiously-incited conflict comes to the fore, like how he came out to thank Cornerstone Church for the apology regarding a potentially inflammatory incident.
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Three new ministers were appointed as three ministers with the collective experience of 66 years as top Ministers step down

Lim Hng Kiang steps down as Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) – he will be replaced by Chan Chun Sing, who is relinquishing his post in the Prime Minister’s Office. Chan Chun Sing will also take over responsibility for the Public Service Division from Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, while he continues to be Deputy Chairman of People’s Association.

Lim Swee Say steps down as Minister for Manpower, to be succeeded by Josephine Teo who will also relinquish her post in the Prime Minister’s Office but will continue as Second Minister for Home Affairs.

Yaacob Ibrahim is also stepping down as Minister for Communications and Information. S Iswaran, who has been the Minister for Trade and Industry since 2015, will take over from Yaacob as MCI Minister but will retain a presence in the Ministry of Trade and Industry as Minister‐in‐charge of Trade Relations.

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ST says 3 veteran ministers stepping down to be replaced by 4G ones

Straits Times reported on its papers today (14 Apr) that three veteran ministers will be stepping down when Parliament resumes on 7 May next month.

Quoting its "sources", ST identified the three to be:
  • Trade and Industry Minister Lim Hng Kiang
  • Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say
  • Information and Communications Minister Yaacob Ibrahim
ST wrote that "farewell plans are afoot at their respective ministries". However, it's not clear if they will retire from politics altogether at the next General Election. According to ST, they will be replaced by the current new 4G leaders in Cabinet.

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In retrospect: 3 veteran ministers stepping down to make way for younger leaders

Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lim Swee Say and Dr Yaacob Ibrahim will leave behind nearly 70 years of collective experience as office holders when they leave their ministerial posts.
When Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lim Swee Say and Dr Yaacob Ibrahim finally leave their respective ministerial posts come May 1, they will be leaving behind 66 years of collective experience as office holders.

The Cabinet reshuffle, revealed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Tuesday (Apr 24), had first been mooted in February this year. Then, he said younger ministers will be given more exposure and responsibility and they will then be able to better support his successor.

“The Prime Minister thanks Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lim Swee Say and Dr Yaacob Ibrahim for their services and contributions, in multiple portfolios over many years,” the press statement by the Prime Minister’s Office said.

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PM Lee pays tribute to retiring ministers Lim Hng Kiang, Lim Swee Say and Yaacob Ibrahim
Retiring ministers Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lim Swee Say & Dr Yaacob Ibrahim

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has written valedictory letters to the 3 veteran ministers who will be retiring come May 1: Mr Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lim Swee Say and Dr Yaacob Ibrahim.

In a letter to Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang, Mr Lee said he has served the country "with dedication and distinction".

In Cabinet, Mr Lim carried heavy responsibilities and implemented many policies to improve people's lives and advance Singapore's interests, Mr Lee added.

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PM Lee lauds retiring Ministers’ lasting contributions
(From left) Minister for Trade & Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang, Manpower Minister Lim Swee Say, & Minister for Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Friday (April 27) lauded the lasting contributions of 3 retiring Cabinet Ministers & looked forward to their continued service to the country in other ways.

Following a Cabinet reshuffle announced earlier this week, Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang, 64, Minister for Manpower Lim Swee Say, 63, and Minister for Communications and Information Yaacob Ibrahim, 62, will be stepping down on May 1. They will remain as Members of Parliament.

In valedictory letters which were released to the media, Mr Lee thanked the 3 long-serving ministers, who have a combined experience of almost 60 years in the Cabinet.

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Lee Hsien Loong 27 April at 02:04

With the 4G ministers taking on more responsibility in the Cabinet, 3 older stalwarts of my Cabinet will be stepping down as Ministers.

Ministers Lim Hng KiangLim Swee Say and Yaacob Ibrahim are veterans, having faithfully served Singapore across a wide range of leadership positions since the 1990s. Through their efforts and guidance, together adding up to almost 70 years, Singapore overcame multiple challenges, and saw through many policies that have improved our lives.

I have known Minister Lim Hng Kiang for well over 40 years. He has been instrumental in keeping Singapore’s economy resilient and robust in an uncertain global environment, concluding trade agreements like the CPTPP with partner countries. Hng Kiang’s calm, steady demeanour was invaluable during the 2008 Global Financial Crisis and the SARS outbreak, when he made sound decisions that saw us through those dark times. (You can read my letter to him here:

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Singapore’s Most Underrated Minister is the Minister It Needs the Most

Three ministers will be stepping down from the Cabinet on Labour Day tomorrow, and one of them may not even ring a bell for most Singaporeans. Lim Hng Kiang who?

You’ve probably seen his face in the newspapers once, many years ago. And if you’re a resident in Telok Blangah, you may recognise him in the pamphlets advertising his Meet-the-People sessions in your neighbourhood.

However, Minister Lim, who will be stepping down as Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade), is no ordinary MP. Having entered politics in 1991, he’s one of the old guard of the 3G leadership. He’s also the longest-serving minister of the current Cabinet after Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

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Lim Hng Kiang silent for 17 years after foot-in-mouth moment

When questioned in Parliament if the government can do more to help women go for breast-cancer screening, PAP Minister Lim Hng Kiang said:
“Save on one hairdo and use the money for breast-cancer screening.”
The foot-in-mouth moment eventually scarred the PAP Minister who said that after that incident, he had become silent for the next 17 years after:
“My intent was to get across the message that health is a personal responsibility, but it did not placate everyone. Perhaps the memory of the episode 17 years ago still lingers…I’m not a good communicator as you know by now. To get around it, I turn to Cabinet colleagues and MPs with better communication skills. We share among ourselves arguments or examples that we believe will resonate and we use them. They don’t look to me to come up with a better communications plan.”
The former army general who held the rank of Lieutenant-General was a crony of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The two had been friends for over 40 years since they met in Cambridge University. Minister Lim Hng Kiang was brought to politics under Lee Kuan Yew’s Tanjong Pagar GRC.

Lim Swee Say: My English is “distilled” from 40 years of experience
Minister Yaacob Ibrahim: Singaporean Malays are progressing because of me

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Minister takes flak for comments on breast cancer screening

SINGAPORE'S health minister has come under fire from women's welfare advocates for his "callous" remarks about breast cancer screening and is being urged to make an apology, a report said August 19.

Lim Hng Kiang is taking flak for urging women, during a debate in parliament last week, to go for breast screening rather than spend money on a new hairdo, the Sunday Times said. In a statement over the weekend Lim said he was "not trivialising the issue" when he equated the S$50 (US$27) it costs for a breast-screening procedure with a visit to the hair salon.

"Quite the contrary. It was to illustrate a serious point: that health is a personal responsibility and personal choices are required," Lim said.

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Quick math by Minister Lim Swee Say
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Labour chief Lim Swee Say clarifies CPF comments

I refer to the article, "Prepare for retirement 'by using less CPF money when young'" (23 June).

The article para-phrased my comments and wrote, "The best way for Singaporeans to prepare for retirement is to use less of their Central Provident Fund (CPF) money when they are young." It gave the impression that I have urged Singaporeans not to use their CPF monies before retirement for any purpose including housing, healthcare and education for our children.

This is incorrect.

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From Lim Lui Teo to Yaacob

Born on 13 July 1954, Mr Lim Swee Say studied at the Catholic High School and the National Junior College.  He was awarded a Singapore Armed Forces (UK) Scholarship in 1973 and studied Electronics, Computer and Systems Engineering at Loughborough University of Technology in the United Kingdom.

He graduated with a First Class Honours degree in 1976 and was admitted to the honorary degree of Doctor of Technology in 2006.  He attended the Stanford Sloan Programme at Stanford University and graduated with a Master's Degree in Management in 1991.

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Upturn The Downturn

Lim Swee Say, Secretary-General, NTUC, said: "Our slogan is 'upturn the downturn'. In other words, we believe that while everybody is focused on the downside of the downturn, we as the labour movement, look at the upside of the downturn, because we believe that the downturn presents the same challenge to every companies, to every economy in this world, yet at the same time it will draw different responses.

"In the case of Singapore, the partnership, our ability to work together as government, as employers, as labour movement, is our biggest strength and unique capability." The labour movement added that it will work with companies to restructure their operations.

Mr Lim said: "Our concern is that if every organisation takes retrenchment too lightly (and) as the first resort, as the first action, takes it as a way to cut costs...this could lead to massive retrenchment, and this could lead to a very rapid rise in unemployment. I think that is our concern, because we are already seeing that." Mr Lim feels such situations can be avoided with effective tripartism.

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A one-of-a-kind union that rejects minimum wage
Inspiring great confidence in the union

Every good party needs a clown to provide the laughs, and it was Zorro Lim (not his real name) on the PAP roster yesterday.

At the Budget debate, NTUC Secretary-General Lim Swee Say rejected renewed callsby several MPs, including Inderjit Singh and NMP Lawrence Lien, for a minimum wage system. Instead of speaking up for the workers that he is supposed to represent, he is strangely the one voicing the objection, even if we know all along that the government is never keen on the idea.

This must be an absolute one of a kind. Nowhere in the world will you ever find another union chief who argues against higher wages for workers.

related: Govt rejects poverty line, says prosperity line better for social objective

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Union Chief Lim Swee Say: We are like a little deaf frog, deaf to all criticisms

I love Lim Swee Say. He says the darnedest things. Like this fable he told in Parliament:
THE story goes that in a kingdom of frogs, the tallest tower in the world is built for an annual competition. And when the event is held, many aim to become the champion by making it to the top, but fail as they are discouraged by the audience, who warn that the climb is too dangerous. All except one frog who did reach the top. And when asked afterwards why he ignored the crowd, the frog said: 'I'm deaf. I can't hear them.'

With this tale, labour chief Lim Swee Say responded to opposition MP Low Thia Khiang (Hougang), who repeated his criticism of a day earlier that low-wage workers continue to languish, and that the labour movement ought to do better and work harder.

Mr Lim's point: Despite criticisms like those levelled by the Workers' Party chief, the labour movement continues to address problems faced by low-wage workers and to improve their situation.
'We never give up. We are like the little frog. We are deaf to all these criticisms,' he said.

related: Is Tan Chuan-Jin a little deaf frog like Lim Swee Say?

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Darth Zorro Lim Swee Say - Liar Or A Fool?

Not content with leading his storm troopers and clowning about in his Darth Zorro suit to the entertainment of Singapore's nurses and the ire of Singaporean netizens, the NTUC Secretary General has now set his sights on perpetuating the insidious mistruth that Singapore is "one of the most pro-worker nations in the world".

The black-masked member of Lee Kuan Yew's elite "Intellectual Class," who infamously coined the term "cheaper, better, faster" and sang the song "upturn the downturn" (see below), incidentally is paid more than $2 million a year for his costume-bearing antics and pretensions to the Singapore idol crown. Yet, Lim's assertion that Singapore is 'pro-worker' could hardly be further from the truth.

One of the most damning pieces of evidence contradicting Lim's assertion is Singapore's persistently low wage share of GDP. In 2000, a paper by the Singapore Statistics Department highlighted that Singapore's wage share was 42 per cent, lower than the United States' (58 per cent), Japan's (57 per cent) and France's (52 per cent). This low share accompanied conscious efforts by the Government to moderate wage increases and maintain high returns to investment from foreign multinational companies. It was thus not surprising that Singapore's company profit share was 48 per cent of GDP, higher than the profit shares of the same countries mentioned above, which were closer to 35 per cent.

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Lim Swee Say at his nonsensical best

ST headline “CPF money 100% safe: Swee Say” caught my eye. I knew anything related to Lim Swee Say, minister with zero portfolio with a fetish for DTF toothpicks, would be interesting. The more our government emphasises the ‘safety’ of CPF monies in the absence of transparency, the moreCPF members should worry.

Swee Say also said our “CPF is 100% safe and is protected against events like the global financial crisis”. This is clearly false as the market value of CPF investments in GIC were decimated during the crisis.

It is almost impossible to believe a confused cabinet minister could have made such comments. But then again, coming from Lim Swee Say, nothing is impossible.

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Spot The Difference

The linguistically challenged minister cried foul when Channel Newsasia quoted him saying:
“The best way for Singaporeans to prepare for retirement is to use less of their Central Provident Fund (CPF) money when they are young.”

It sounds so perfectly logical until Lim Swee Say insisted he was misquoted, and provided his original intended text: "... the less you make use of your money when you are young, the more money you will have for retirement."

For the less devious, this may look like a version of the old kids' game of trying to spot the differences in two seemingly identical representations. Lim highlighted his unique mindset when he expanded: "It is clear in this context that ‘young’ refers to those who are aged 55."

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CPF: The cock that Swee Say talks

The best way for Singaporeans to prepare for retirement is to use less of their Central Provident Fund (CPF) money when they are young. Mr Lim Swee Say, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office, said this will ensure the current level of CPF payout can be maintained over time and not be eroded by inflation.

Mr Lim, who is also the labour chief, made that point when speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the closing of the Singapore Model Parliament yesterday. (23 Jan 2014). He later issued a clarification saying “that housing, healthcare and education for the children” were excluded from his spending comments, saying the constructive, nation-building media had misreported him.

Even with the clarification, he was talking rubbish, showing how clueless the nTUC minister was with the life of his ordinary members.

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How to understand what Lim Swee Say is saying

5 Ways to Interpret Lim Swee Say’s latest CPF Gobbledegook

Minister in the PMO and Labour Chief Lim Swee Say’s latest statement about CPF has been feeding the flames of Mount Facebook since it was reported yesterday evening.

His easily-misinterpreted statement, delivered off-the-cuff on the sidelines of a Singapore Model Parliament event, has left many fuming, some puzzled, and others scrambling to defend the man.

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Govt’s handling of recent cases: Lim Swee Say

On 22 July, NTUC Chief, Lim Swee Say, was reported to have said that he likes the toothpicks from the Din Tai Fung restaurant, so much so that he “can never resist” to “pinch” half a box each time he visits the restaurant.

“They always serve in a pack,” he told reporters at BreadTalk Group’s new headquarters in Tai Seng. “And because I go there very early – 10.30 in the morning – always full right. And guess what? By the time I left, normally right, it’s half left. The other half is in my pocket.”

His remarks and admission drew criticisms from the public who chided him for displaying the worst traits of a “kiasu” Singaporean – one who hoards things and disregard others. While some of the criticisms were overboard, the gist of them is still valid – especially when one considers that the government has spent millions of dollars throughout the decades to inculcate and promote a “kind society”.

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Lim Swee Say can never resist Din Tai Fung toothpicks

According to Lim Swee Say, the measure of a company’s success is how it pays attention to fine details. He also believes they should emulate Lady Gaga. The DTF toothpick is unusual in that it resembles an interdental brush, with bristles to give our labour chief’s oral cavity a ‘shiok’, clean feeling after every meal. Perhaps the restaurant should sell their designer picks as a side merchandise considering they have one very rich customer who’s an obvious fan of their product, an addict even.

I never had much success with the traditional wooden picks myself, but now that the Minister has put his stamp of approval on this tiny marvel of dental engineering, I simply have to give it a shot. Now I can dislodge little pieces of xiao long bao with a touch of sophistication, when all I was doing in the past was poking twigs between my gums like a caveman. Thank you Sir for showing me the way to refinement and good taste.

After this endorsement, you’re likely to have some kiasu, ugly Singaporeans following the Minister’s example and taking home half box fulls of quality toothpicks to save money on Oral-B products, a behaviour more commonly known as bad etiquette or miserliness. Maybe Lim Swee Say is a stickler for oral hygiene, but this is just shameless.

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Yaacob wants you to read the "right" things

My mother, when I told her about MDA's new online licencing scheme: "Gahmen so free ah? Why they don't do something more useful?"

Mom has a way of not mincing her words. But Minister Yaacob "Freak Events" Ibrahim says, to the BBC in this video:
"I think it is important for us to ensure that they [ordinary Singaporeans] read the RIGHT thing…"
Siew Kum Hong says on Facebook about this quote from Yaacoob, "There will of course be claims that those who quote this sentence, are taking it out of context — because he goes on to say that "the right things" really means accurate reporting. To which I say — this quote probably betrays what the gahmen is truly seeking to achieve. And if the goal is to ensure that falsehoods and inaccuracies are not reported, then why not limit the power to order content removal to only the content that is false or inaccurate?"

related: What happened to my "mrbrown and the flood" column

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Idea of the '50-year flood' has been misunderstood

For many people, the sight of all four city-bound lanes of the Ayer Rajah Expressway submerged just over a week ago would have triggered a thought along the lines of: "Isn't this sort of thing only supposed to happen once every 50 years?"

This half-century time-frame entered the national consciousness in 2009, when then minister for the environment and water resources Yaacob Ibrahim said the flooding in Orchard Road that year was a "freak event" that happened once every 50 years.

Dr Yaacob was referring specifically amount of rainfall that caused the flood although his quote is now dredged up every time there is a flood (and there have been several) as proof of how badly the authorities misjudged the flood risk here.

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Deluge a 'once in 50 years' event

THURSDAY'S deluge which submerged parts of Bukit Timah was a 'freak' event that occurs once in 50 years, Minister for the Environment and Water Resources Yaacob Ibrahim said yesterday.

'What happened was very unusual,' he said. 'The intensity was tremendous.'

Shortly after 1pm the skies opened and in the next two hours, almost 110mm of rain fell - almost half the average monthly rainfall for November.

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Continuing Spectre of Dr. Yaacob's Licensing Rules Saga

The fact that the draconian new licensing scheme for online news sites was foisted on the Internet public with hardly any notice, much less any consultation with the concerned public or debate in Parliament does not bear the hallmark of a government that is confident of clinching GE 2016 or   people-oriented. Very craftily, Dr.Yaacob Ibrahim presented ten news websites which included seven Singapore Press Holdings sites, two Mediacorp sites and Yahoo Singapore which required licensing from 1st June and pledged that other Internet users or bloggers would be free to continue to criticise the government without fear of governmental restrictions, unless racial and religious issues were involved.

The PAP Government hopes that in this way it will be able to pull a wool over the public's eyes and deflect any agitation from the Internet public against the licensing scheme.

The groundswell of resistance against the scheme was something which the PAP Government may or may not have expected and Dr. Yaacob  became the PAP hatchet man to try to manage damage control. The bloggers formed a "Free the Internet" movement to spearhead and co-ordinate action to pressurise the Government to rescind the licensing scheme which is regarded as a sinister move by the Government to clamp down on dissent. On this Dr. Yaacob and the Media Development Authority (MDA) are seen to be  strenously working to try to assure the Internet public that the Government has no such intention but the bloggers remained adamant and would accept nothing short of rescinding the sinister scheme.

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Allowing hijab problematic for some jobs: Yaacob
Minister urges members of Malay-Muslim community to be patient & says they will continue discussions

Wearing a Muslim headscarf at the workplace would be “very problematic” for some professions that require their staff to be in uniform, said Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Yaacob Ibrahim yesterday.

Weighing in on the issue for the first time since a debate began in September, Dr Yaacob said in a note on his FaceBook page that many employers here have exercised flexibility on the practice. However, he pointed out that police officers and Singapore Armed Forces servicemen are not allowed to wear or display religious symbols on their uniforms or faces.

“Nor do we allow Muslim police women officers to wear the hijab on duty,” Dr Yaacob, who is also Minister for Communications and Information, wrote. “But when they are out of uniform, they are free to wear the hijab, as indeed many do going to and from work.”

related: 'Tu dung' or Not 'tu dung'?

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Not sure if fake but good points nevertheless

Excellent read written by my retired Friend. .... Seven pieces of advice Mahathir probably gave to Hsien Loong on his short visit to the comeback man in Putrajaya:

  • Next time when you partying with your new friends, don’t forget your old friends outside the gates. When you were eating Durians with Najib and Rosmah you did not even pay a visit to the old man Mahathir to say hello? Well I guess I was a pariah and you did not want to be associated with me. I understand. But good and insightful politicians never assume fallen leaders people can’t make a comeback. So don’t just visit me or Anwar, make time for Najib later after all he is still your Friend is he not and who says he can’t make a comeback? Look at what I have done at 92. Najib still has some years to go.
  • There is no need to wear a batik shirt and smile all the time when you come to congratulate me. We are both PMs and are equal in status. If you are filled with humility and respect it will show in other ways so no need to put it on show. I did not care much for your father and disagreed with his policies but I respected him for his firm resolve and standing up to other countries when it mattered. He was a true leader and had balls.
  • Be wise in placing your bets and if you lose it is Ok but never do a Tony Fernandez. When your horse doesn’t come in don’t go around telling people it was a mistake or you were forced to make the bet. People will lose respect for you. Don’t forget the same horse may win the next race. I am a good example.
  • Choose your cabinet ministers wisely. Scholars and Generals may be fine in intellect but are they leaders with courage and conviction who care enough for the Rakyat? Look at my team. Many have been imprisoned, persecuted and ostracised by BN and their henchmen but they stayed and fought for the Rakyat. Guan Eng has done wonders for Penang. He was jailed twice but he had steel in him. He did not migrate but stayed on to fight because he believed in Malaysia. Now that’s what I call true leaders of the people not those who have high IQs and come out with fantastic income generating policies that contribute to GDP and GNP but with no real benefit for the Rakyat.
  • Choose men and women with backbones. Don’t choose people who always say yes to you. Look at Khairy, BN’s former Youth Minister. He is an Oxford grad and highly intelligent. But what did he do when BN was thrown out? He said “Oh we should have spoken out and it was a mistake not to tell Najib that his policies were wrong, etc.” What bullshit! He had no guts to say no to Najib because he was a Yes man and enjoying all the perks of a Minister. You know what happens when you have Yes men in your cabinet? They think only of themselves. Like Judas they will disown you when the chips are down because now they hope they will be absolved of their past crimes.
  • Always remember to govern your country with a paramount emphasis on the rule of law. I admit I did not do so in the past when I was PM and that was a bad mistake. When you politicise the police, the attorney general, the civil service, heads of statutory boards, etc, they take the liberty of enforcing your rule with strong-armed and undemocratic tactics and practices. That is not only wrong but harms your integrity, your people’s integrity and the reputation of your country. The world distrusted us because of it. I realised this when I was in the wilderness and part of the Rakyat.
  • Don’t get your wife too involved in the affairs of the state. Look at Rosmah. She did not hold any official appointment but she did give orders to many government officials and they obeyed because she was the PM’s wife. Plus Najib was under her spell. Your Father was wise, your Mother played a very supportive role. I do the same with Siti Hasmah. She like your Mother are highly educated women but they stay in the background and are detached from any form of role that has a say in government, state investment or what to do with the state’s coffers.
You must remember the Rakyat  will always talk and such talk can also contribute to a tsunami which happened in our case.

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From Lim Lui Teo to Yaacob