Wednesday, 13 November 2019

PM Lee Calls for Singaporeans’ Support as ‘Tough’ Election Looms

Singapore’s leaders need strong backing from voters to weather uncertain times, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said as he called on members of the ruling party to prepare for a “tough fight” at the next general election

Speaking at the People’s Action Party convention, Lee pointed to some economies around the world where public faith in governments has eroded, and both traditional and socialist parties have been weakened, the Straits Times reported. Populist movements may have upended the status quo but aren’t always able to offer something better, CNA cited Lee as saying.

“There’s a lot of uncertainty in the world, a lot is at stake,” Lee, 67, said in video snippets of his speech posted on CNA’s website. “This election is not just about the PAP doing a bit better or a bit worse, this election will decide if Singapore can sustain good and stable government, to be different from other countries for a long time to come.”

In Hong Kong and Chile, protests illustrate how the people have lost faith in institutions, while Singapore has enjoyed relative peace, Lee was cited as saying at the gathering on Sunday.

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Next general election a 'high stakes' one for PAP, says PM Lee: reports
The ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) needs a strong win at the upcoming general election to show it has the full backing of the people and to secure Singapore’s long-term future

This was the sentiment expressed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during this speech at the party’s convention on Sunday (10 November) at the Singapore Expo, according to local media reports.

“Others will be watching us closely to see if the PAP wins a strong mandate, especially at a time of leadership transition,” said Lee to the 2,500 party members and activists at the event.

“We must convince Singaporeans to give us a strong mandate. Not just to return a PAP government, but also to secure Singapore for the long term,” he added, noting that the coming election will be a “high stakes” one.

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Analysts say local issues likely to be most important for voters in the upcoming GE
At the top of most people’s minds are everyday concerns such as the cost of living and what the present administration has done concerning these issues

After speeches from Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on Sunday, November 10, at ruling People’s Action Party PAP65 Awards and Convention at the Singapore Expo which may well be the last time that PAP activists gather together before the upcoming General Election (GE), experts are saying that foremost on voters minds will most likely be domestic issues such as cost of living and the transition to the 4G (fourth generation) leadership, according to a report from The Straits Times (ST).

And unless the effect of foreign issues is driven home with voters, these experts say that domestic challenges are likely to be considered as the most significant.

On Sunday, the Prime Minister had called the upcoming GE a crucial one in the light of the country’s future and highlighted Singapore’s vulnerabilities in an uncertain global atmosphere. This is not new, according to analysts, noting that PAP has emphasized in the past how important a stable government is in times of instability.

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Ahead of election, Lee tells public not to let S’pore become ‘dysfunctional’
Lee Hsien Loong says this election will decide if city state can sustain good, stable govt. (Reuters pic)

Singapore’s leaders need strong backing from voters to weather uncertain times, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said as he called on members of the ruling party to prepare for a “tough fight” at the next general election.

Speaking at the People’s Action Party convention, Lee pointed to some economies around the world where public faith in governments has eroded, and both traditional and socialist parties have been weakened, the Straits Times reported.

Populist movements may have upended the status quo but aren’t always able to offer something better, CNA cited Lee as saying.

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Next GE will decide if S'pore can sustain a good, stable Govt: PM Lee Hsien Loong
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday called on activists to work hard to convince Singaporeans to give the ruling party the mandate to lead the country again in the coming election.ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday set out what is at stake for the next general election, saying it will decide if Singapore can sustain a good and stable government that can safeguard Singaporeans' lives and well-being.

Addressing 2,500 People's Action Party (PAP) activists at what could be the last major party gathering before the general election, he told them to be prepared for a tough fight.

PM Lee, the PAP's secretary-general, called on activists to continue working hard to convince Singaporeans to give the ruling party the mandate to lead the country again in the upcoming election, which will take place amid an uncertain global environment.

related:
Strong mandate for leaders critical as Spore faces external challenges: PM Lee
4G leaders will uphold high standards of trust, put S'poreans front and centre: DPM

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PAP 'must never, ever be afraid to do what is right for Singapore', says PM Lee
People's Action Party Secretary-General Lee Hsien Loong speaks at the PAP65 Awards and Convention on Nov 10, 2019. (Photo: Gaya Chandramohan)

The People’s Action Party (PAP) “must never, ever be afraid to do what is right for Singapore”, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Sunday (Nov 10) at the PAP convention, a gathering of the party's members and activists.

Citing the Government's decision to amend the Constitution to allow for a Presidential Election to be reserved for a particular racial group if no one from that group has been president for five continuous terms, Mr Lee acknowledged that not all Singaporeans agreed with the decision.

"Overall, in the short term, this issue is a political minus for the government, for the PAP. But this is part of governing. I am convinced that we did the right thing,” he added.

related:
S'pore must guard against "dangerous split" between people and elite: PM Lee
PM Lee says PAP must prepare for "tough fight" in upcoming election
S'pore needs leaders who can defuse bilateral issues, with full backing of the people

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PM: Unity of Singaporeans is first line of defence
He says next general election will decide if Singapore can keep good Government

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong yesterday set out what is at stake for the next general election, saying it will decide if Singapore can sustain a good and stable Government that can safeguard Singaporeans' lives and well- being.

Addressing 2,500 People's Action Party (PAP) activists at what could be the last major party gathering before the general election, he told them to be prepared for a tough fight.

PM Lee, the PAP's secretary-general, called on activists to continue working hard to convince Singaporeans to give the ruling party the mandate to lead the country again.

related: Being upfront about GST hike shows integrity of Govt: DPM Heng

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Reserved presidency a 'political minus' but right thing to do: PM Lee
The move gives minority ethnic groups an assurance that their place in society will always be safeguarded, he said, just like how the group representation constituency system - which guarantees at least one candidate per constituency is from a minority race - ensures there will always be MPs from minority races in Parliament

The PAP secretary-general was referring to public unhappiness over the Constitutional amendments passed in November 2016, to reserve the elected presidency for candidates of a particular racial group if there had not been a president from the group for the five most recent presidential terms.

Critics said the decision went against Singapore's meritocratic values, and hundreds protested in Hong Lim Park days after the first election, reserved for Malays, saw Madam Halimah Yacob sworn in as President on Sept 14, 2017.

Mr Lee cited the issue as an example of how Singapore is proactively strengthening the institutions that support its multiracial and multi-religious society.

related: President Halimah's inauguration:Don’t overlook this key moment in Spore’s history

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PAP must never be afraid to do what is right for Singapore: PM Lee
The reserved Presidential Election in 2017 saw Madam Halimah Yacob elected unopposed

The People’s Action Party (PAP) must never be afraid to do what is right for Singapore, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Sunday (Nov 10), noting that not all Singaporeans agreed with the need for a reserved Presidential Election to ensure minority races in the Republic’s highest office.

“If you ask me, overall from a short-term perspective, this issue is probably a political minus for the Government, for the PAP. But this is part of governing. I am convinced that we did the right thing. We must never, ever be afraid to do what is right for Singapore,” said Mr Lee to around 2,500 party activists at the PAP65 Awards and Convention at the Singapore Expo. The conference was held to mark the 65th anniversary of the PAP’s founding on Nov 21, 1954.

The reserved Presidential Election in 2017 saw Madam Halimah Yacob elected unopposed, and Mr Lee also said then that he recognised the move was unpopular and could cause the ruling party to lose votes.

related:
Halimah’s election lauded as ‘true sign of S’pore’s meritocracy’ in region
Support package to ‘cushion impact’ of impending GST hike to be announced
PAP must be prepared for a tough fight in the coming GE, says PM Lee
When could General Election be held?Analysts,opposition parties give their take
Who’s on Electoral Boundaries Review Committee,how it draws up GE battle lines

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S’pore’s key test is competent leadership, not ‘right numerical balance’ in Parliament: PM Lee

Singapore’s key test in the next decade or two is whether it has competent leadership that works for Singaporeans, rather than achieving the “right numerical balance” in Parliament between the opposition and the Government, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

“I hope that 10 years from now — even 20 years from now — Singapore will have a system which is functioning for it, which commands respect from the population and acceptance that this is a system which is working for them and delivering good government to them,” Mr Lee said in an interview with global news network CNN, clips of which were uploaded on its website on Tuesday (Oct 8).

The prime minister was answering a question from host Fareed Zakaria on whether Singapore would, a decade from now, have a more balanced and open two-party democratic system. Many people have said Singapore’s political system was too unfairly tilted towards the ruling party, Mr Zakaria noted.

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Critical for Singapore to send 'positive signal' to the world in next general election: Chan Chun Sing

A "strong, stable coherent political system" is needed to inspire confidence in the economy, said Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing on Monday (Nov 11).

It would also allow Singapore to attract "strong economic investments, creation of good jobs, helping everybody move along amidst all the disruption, and this will allow us to support a strong political system, and a virtual cycle continues to spiral upwards," he said in an interview with CNA's Dawn Tan.

A fractured political system will emerge without strong economic performance, strong investments and good jobs, he said adding that politics and economics are "closely intertwined".

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4G leaders will uphold high standards of trust, put S'poreans front & centre: DPM

The fourth-generation (4G) leadership of the People's Action Party (PAP) Government will always uphold and defend the high standards of trust and integrity that have underpinned Singapore's success and put partnerships with Singaporeans "front and centre", said Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat.

Speaking at the PAP65 Awards and Convention at the Singapore Expo yesterday, Mr Heng, the party's first assistant secretary-general, said trust and integrity were why he moved a motion in Parliament on the governance of the Workers' Party-run Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC) last Tuesday.

Parliament had voted for the motion that called on WP MPs Sylvia Lim and Low Thia Khiang to recuse themselves from all financial matters at AHTC, after the High Court last month found the two opposition leaders had acted dishonestly in awarding, without a tender, a managing agent contract to a company set up by their supporters after winning Aljunied GRC in the 2011 General Election.

related: 4G leadership must and will maintain high standards of trust and integrity: DPM Heng Swee Keat on AHTC motion

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PAP doesn't hide from difficult truths, will uphold high standards of integrity and trust: Heng Swee Keat
People's Action Party first assistant secretary-general Heng Swee Keat at the PAP65 Awards and Convention on Nov 10, 2019. (Photo: Gaya Chandramohan)

The People's Action Party (PAP) does not hide from “difficult truths”, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat said on Sunday (Nov 10) at the PAP Convention, a gathering of party members and activists.

Speaking as his party’s first assistant secretary-general, Mr Heng was speaking about an announcement he made two years ago to raise the Goods and Services Tax (GST). News of the hike was met with some unhappiness. Mr Heng, who is also the Finance Minister, said he knows the move is unpopular, and many people have asked him not to talk about it anymore.

“But if I don’t bring it up, the opposition parties definitely will, so it’s better that you hear it from me,” said Mr Heng, as the deadline for the next General Election looms near.

related:
GST in Singapore to be raised to 9% between 2021 and 2025
‘A decision not taken lightly’: Heng Swee Keat explains reasons for GST hike

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Govt to give details of GST support package in Budget 2020, ahead of tax hike in next term: DPM Heng
PM Lee Hsien Loong, DPM Heng Swee Keat and PAP Central Executive Committee members on stage at the start of the PAP65 Awards and Convention on Nov 10, 2019.ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Raising the Goods and Services Tax (GST) rate is an unpopular move, and the Government could have waited for the upcoming General Elections to be over before announcing it. But that would not be the honest thing to do, said Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat.

Mr Heng, speaking on Sunday (Nov 10) at the People's Action Party (PAP) convention at the Singapore Expo, noted that party activists had urged him not to talk about the move anymore, as the elections are coming.

"The responsible thing to do is to be upfront, and tell the people that it will happen. This is what integrity means. We don't hide from difficult truths," said Mr Heng. "If I don't bring it up, the opposition parties definitely will - so it's better that you hear it directly from me."

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Support package to ‘cushion impact’ of impending GST hike to be announced in Budget 2020: DPM Heng
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat speaking at a gathering of about 2,500 PAP activists at the PAP65 Awards and Convention at the Singapore Expo on Nov 10

A support package to cushion the impact of the impending Goods and Services Tax (GST) hike will be announced at the Budget next year, said Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat on Sunday (Nov 10).

Mr Heng made the announcement during a speech at a People’s Action Party (PAP) convention, which he described as possibly “the last party gathering before the next General Election”.

He said that the GST Voucher is a permanent scheme to help seniors and low-income households cope with the tax hike.

related: Upcoming GST hike: DPM Heng says there'll be measures to cushion impact

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4G leaders ready for Singapore GE: PM Lee Hsien Loong
The 4G leaders are familiar with issues like ensuring housing and healthcare affordability, having been in politics for some time, said PM Lee Hsien Loong during an interview in New York on Sept 27, 2019.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

The People's Action Party's (PAP) fourth-generation political leaders are ready for the upcoming general election and are preparing for the challenges facing Singapore, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Friday.

"We are ready at any time," he said when asked whether the party leadership was primed for the election, which must be held by April 2021.

Earlier this month, the Elections Department said the committee reviewing Singapore's electoral boundaries had been convened, the first formality on the road to the general election.

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People’s Voice Lim Tean in agreement with veteran architect that MPs are not “estate managers”
Tay Kheng Soon calls for a separate full-time manager to handle daily tasks of a constituency

People’s Voice founding leader Lim Tean took to his Facebook on Monday (18 November) to pen his agreement with veteran architect Tay Kheng Soon who stated that the role of a Member of Parliament (MP) is to be a “legislator in Parliament to enact laws” and not exactly “be the manager of the everyday municipal affairs of his constituency”.

“We agree totally with Tay Kheng Soon that an MP is not an estate manager! I said this during the television debate in GE 2015. If you want an estate manager as MP, then make sure your MP has professional qualification to be an estate manager,” Lim Tean wrote in his post. He also noted that even if the MPs are expected to be estate managers, People’s Action Party (PAP) MPs “fare poorly compared to the Opposition ones”.

“Was very impressed with how squeaky clean Jalan Damai under Pritam Singh is, whereas parts of Woodlands under PAP are the slums Lee Kuan Yew said Opposition wards would turn into. That has not happened!” Lim Tean explained.


Lim Tean shared a post. November 18 at 9:30 PM

We Agree Totally With Tay Kheng Soon That An MP Is Not An Estate Manager!

I said this during the televised debate in GE 2015. If you want an estate manager as MP, then make sure your MP has professional qualifications to be an estate manager.

Even if we want the MP to be an estate manager, the PAP MPs fare poorly compared to the Opposition ones. Was very impressed with how squeaky clean Jalan Damai under Pritam Singh is, whereas parts of Woodlands under the PAP are the slums Lee Kuan Yew said Opposition wards would turn into. That has not happened!


Tay Kheng Soon November 18 at 5:13 PM

The role of an MP is primarily that of a legislator in Parliament to enact laws. His role in his constituency is to learn and reflect the views of his constituents regarding the laws of the land.

There has been a great misunderstanding of this role as it evolved over the years. The MP is not and never meant to be the manager of the everyday municiple affairs of his constituency. This is and should be done by full time managers employed for this.

As legislator he will of course want to seek out the views of his constituents on the laws and regulations that affect the country and also his constituents. Laws such as disallowing PMDs on footpaths or CECA or foreign policy relations with China and USA. His meet the people sessions us for this. To demand that an MP be responsible for a locked firehose in a fire is totally wrong.


Brad Bowyer urges citizens to use their “democratic rights”
“I’d like my country to evolve by evolution, not revolution"

On Thursday (5 December), political activist Brad Bowyer took to his Facebook to share his thoughts on how the People’s Action Party (PAP) is building more “legal walls to defend itself”.

In his post, Mr Bowyer who is currently a Progress Singapore Party member shared an article that was originally published in the Straits Times (ST) 7 years ago when he was still attached to PAP as a volunteer.

The ST article talked about why he got involved into politics and what he hoped to improve. “It gets to a point where you realise the world you live in is what you make of it. If you’ve got the ability to do something, you have a responsibility to do so.”

Full Coverage:
Next GE will decide if Singapore can sustain a good, stable Govt: PM Lee
Strong mandate for leaders critical as S'pore faces external challenges: PM Lee
4G leaders uphold high standards of trust, put S'poreans front & centre: DPM
S'pore needs leaders defuse bilateral issues, full backing of the people: PM Lee
PAP must never be afraid to do what is right for Singapore: PM Lee
PM Lee says PAP must prepare for "tough fight" in upcoming election
S'pore must guard against "dangerous split" between people and elite: PM Lee
Lee Calls for Singaporeans’ Support as ‘Tough’ Election Looms
S'pore PM Lee anticipates 'tough fight' at next general election
PAP must be prepared for a tough fight in coming General Election: PM Lee
PAP 'must never, ever be afraid to do what is right for Singapore', says PM Lee
Next general election a 'high stakes' one for PAP, says PM Lee: reports
PM: Unity of Singaporeans is first line of defence
Govt to give details of GST support package in Budget 2020, ahead of tax hike
PAP doesn't hide from difficult truths, will uphold high standards of integrity & trust
Support package 'cushion impact' impending GST hike to announce Budget 2020
DPM Heng: Two rescue jobs so far. He has to do much better
4G leadership must & will maintain high standards of trust & integrity, DPM Heng
Upcoming GST hike: DPM Heng says there'll be measures to cushion impact


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