From: Alex Tan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: Fri, Nov 8, 2013 at 1:57 AM
Subject: Dear PM Lee, No more walkover for you in 2016
Dear Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong
I contested against you in Ang Mo Kio GRC in GE2011 when I was 23 years old. It was an arduous task for me having to finance my own GRC campaign and finding my own volunteers when I was just an insurance salesman diploma holder bringing home less than $1800 a month. That made me a bottom 20 percentile income earner then; I was poor and I had barely enough for myself every month after paying the bills, and going to a GRC electoral contest was totally out of my financial ability.
But my poverty and hardship did not stop me from being a responsible citizen. When I knew that Ang Mo Kio GRC is going to be a walkover, I was flabbergasted. In fact, I was aghast why did the Opposition Parties allow you to have a walkover. There were many hotly-controversial issues then like the Millionaire Ministerial Salaries, cost of living and the influx of foreigners because of decisions and policies you have enacted and not acted. Singapore eventually became a very unequal society and the side-effects of your short-sighted policies deeply hurt Singaporeans’ livelihood.
You are the Prime Minister, you are responsible for every failure reflected in our income gap and (un)happiness index. It is under your watch and leadership, were salaries allowed to depress, cost of living to spiral out of control and the ground sentiments becoming bitter than never before. There was no light in the tunnel because you were busy focusing your attention on entertainment infrastructures like the casinos and importing foreigners instead of directing efforts on building infrastructural support like housing and universities, and understanding Singaporeans’ concerns. You as the Prime Minister must be held accountable for the aftermath of your short-sighted policies, and that was the primary motivation that possessed the 23 year old to contest in AMK GRC against all odds.
At the eleventh hour before the polls opened, you apologized and many are taken in by your apology. We thought you sounded sincere then and many Singaporeans gave you a second chance. Things look promising when Singaporeans like what they hear right after the GE because of the presidential and by-elections. 2 years later today, we finally see your true color. Not only did you not alleviate the pre-existing problems, you worsen the situation.
1) Singapore’s population increased from 2011’s 5.18 million to today’s 5.4 million, on the backdrop of a never-ending breakdowns in public transport and the drastic overcrowding effect. How could you even entertain the ludicrous idea of a 6.9 million population? Which part of overcrowding do you not understand?
2) Income gap is still widening. Do you even perceive this as a problem? When you boast about Singapore’s economical success, have you spared a thought for our Singaporean elderly your father’s age cleaning tables in coffee shops? It is immoral the country has money to build billion-dollar projects like the Bishan Park River and Project Jewel, while our elderly toils over basic survival. Do you even feel shameful announcing these “exciting” projects?
3) Constant breakdowns in Public Transport and occurrences of flooding. Singaporeans could easily tell that your government have given up on these issues. Breakdowns and flooding is happening so frequently that Singaporeans couldn’t be bothered with complaining any more.
To be fair, I have not fault you of matters that are out of your control (Mas Selamat’s escape) and merely stuck to analyzing your actions where you should have control but acted otherwise.
You are the Prime Minister, be responsible for your Ministers’ actions and not simply hands off after delegating them the respective ministries. There are so many national problems you should be personally fronting the public address instead of leaving them to the respective Ministers. Are you “conserving” political capital by not addressing the tricky issues your Ministers faced? What makes you think you are less responsible just because you are not the direct in-charge?
The events that happened within the 2 years after GE2011 is just much worse. Media regulation. More foreigners. Higher cost of living. Increased income gap.
Back in GE2011, Singaporeans crowdfunded my electoral contest through Temasek Review. Myself or anyone else can easily repeat the same feat using The Real Singapore. If there is going to be no Opposition Party who dare to contest in 2016, I will go. You have screwed up Singapore so much it will be against my conscience I allow you to ever have an electoral walkover.
Alex Tan Zhixiang
Former candidate of AMK GRC