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superpower

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Screenshot 2023-09-16 at 9.02.44 PM.png

A spate of scandals strikes Singapore

18 August 2023
Author: Ying-kit Chan, National University of Singapore

July 2023 was a month to remember in Singapore’s political history. Transport Minister S Iswaran was arrested and released on bail. He is now to assist the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau with an investigation into a case uncovered by the anti-graft agency. The case is speculated to be related to Iswaran’s receipt of gifts from billionaire Ong Beng Seng, who brought Formula One Grand Prix racing to Singapore.

Speaker of parliament Tan Chuan Jin — once tipped to become one of the candidates for prime minister — resigned over an extramarital affair with Tampines Group Representation Constituency member of parliament (MP) Cheng Li Hui. Senior minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam retired from politics to contest Singapore’s next presidential election, which means that four People’s Action Party (PAP) parliamentary seats are now vacant. At a press conference, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong indicated that these are not examples of the PAP’s slipping standards. Instead, he suggested that they are examples of how the PAP deals with allegations against its own MPs.

Lee’s press conference was held on the same day that Leon Perera and Nicole Seah, two high-profile members of the Workers’ Party, were caught in a leaked video having an ‘inappropriate exchange’. Lee took the opportunity to state that, while forcing Tan and Cheng to resign could be politically costly and embarrassing, the PAP must uphold party discipline and standards of conduct.

The timing of the leaked video raises questions. Someone had secretly filmed the adulterous Workers’ Party couple at a restaurant in 2020, but it was only released on social media three years later, in the same week that Lee decided to go public with Tan’s extra-marital affair.

Lee’s conflation of marital infidelity to corruption is a clever sleight of hand. He equated all of the PAP’s scandals — the Ridout Road conflict of interest, Iswaran’s alleged graft and Tan’s marital infidelity — with the Workers’ Party’s one scandal — an episode of marital infidelity that ended years ago. If Lee was already aware of Tan’s affair in 2020, why did he wait until February 2023 to have a ‘hard conversation’ with him?

When pressed to make a stand on Iswaran, Shanmugaratnam expressed the not-so-impartial view (presidential candidates are supposedly nonpartisan in Singapore) that Singapore has never had a prime minister who obstructed the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau in its investigations. Shanmugaratnam was alluding to the case of the former minister for national development, Teh Cheang Wan, who committed suicide before the investigation concluded. Notwithstanding Shanmugaratnam’s popularity and trustworthiness, can his words be taken at face value?

Lee said publicly that he personally approved the probe of Iswaran, meaning that he had the capacity to refuse approval. Ong was at the centre of a different corruption scandal in 1996 that involved million-dollar sweeteners paid to senior minister Lee Kuan Yew and deputy prime minister Lee Hsien Loong. Former prime minister Goh Chok Tong decided not to refer the matter to the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau, instead authorising finance minister Richard Hu to chat with the two Lees and report back. Unsurprisingly, Hu found no wrongdoing, in much the same way that Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean found nothing wrong with the Ridout Road saga.

Under such circumstances, obstruction is not entirely possible under Singapore law. The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau reports directly to the prime minister alone, which puts its independence in doubt. The issue of transparency also arose when Iswaran was reported to be under investigation before it was revealed that he was under arrest.

The recent spate of scandals is likely to hurt the PAP’s chances in the next general election, which will be due by the end of 2025. In 2020, Iswaran’s West Coast Group Representation Constituency was held by only 1.7 per cent after his PAP team suffered a 26 per cent swing against it. After the PAP’s surprise loss of the Sengkang constituency in that election, there is a real possibility that it may not hold onto the West Coast constituency in the next election.

Coupled with the decline in public trust in the PAP since the watershed election of 2011 and the government’s mismanagement of the COVID-19 pandemic, it remains to be seen if the PAP can weather this storm.

Ying-kit Chan is an assistant professor at the Department of Chinese Studies, National University of Singapore.

https://www.eastasiaforum.org/2023/08/18/a-spate-of-scandals-strikes-singapore/
 

k1976

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Singapore has no scandal De woh, we are purer than pure, whiter than white mah.

So, the above article must be a urban fairy tale
 

syed putra

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This is small potato scandal. It's not even a scandal in neighbouring countries. I think it's more a witch hunt.
 

mudhatter

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:roflmao:

coward ball less stinkies dun even dare to protest in huge numbers against pap-piglets.

if pap-piglets could have been criticized freely, they'd have been toppled long ago.

:roflmao:

on the same note, if arabs could criticize their leaders freely they'd have toppled them long ago. but arabs and muslims alike globally lack weapons like nukes, icbms and anti satellite missiles.

lacking these, Muslims globally are behind tiny 25 million statelets like north korea.



:roflmao:

it's an ABSOLUTE SHAME for Muslims globally that muslims are the only large global community that is even weaker than North Korea militarily.

even north korea has tested icbm and nukes openly unlike losers like iran turkey pakistan bangla malaysia indonesia and arab dictatorships etc.

no two ways about it.

without weapons, Muslims remain the LEGITIMATE laughing stocks of the whole world.

without weapons, tested IN PUBLIC, MUSLIMS remain the LEGITIMATE punching bags of the kuffar.

NO IFS, NO BUTS>

NO TRYING.
NO FAILURES allowed.

NO external factors allowed to enter the calculations.

Nukes, icbm and anti satellite missiles must be PUBLICLY tested
otherwise, Muslims would remain LEGITIMATELY the global laughing stock and the most powerless and backward peoples.

Sorry no excuses.

if the kuffar in europe or america commit blasphemy against Islam, we'll just blast them with nukes. we'll take out ALL their space assets with anti satellite missiles no discussion or debate or warning.

what's there NOT to understand?

As it stands, WITHOUT weapons, Muslims are largest community of ppl globally that SHOULD be a laguhing stock.




:roflmao:
 

superpower

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if the kuffar in europe or america commit blasphemy against Islam, we'll just blast them with nukes. we'll take out ALL their space assets with anti satellite missiles no discussion or debate or warning.

what's there NOT to understand?

As it stands, WITHOUT weapons, Muslims are largest community of ppl globally that SHOULD be a laguhing stock.




:roflmao:
Hello, Pakistan is an official nuclear power (one of 9 in the world). Iran will be the next Muslim state to join the club.

So what? Nuclear weapons don't put bread on the table, don't raise living standards, don't make you a superpower, don't make you rich. North Korea is an example - a 'statelet' according to you. South Korea without nuclear weapons has a GDP 57x that of the North.

Go figure.
 

superpower

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This is academic freedom for you, PAP-style.

* * *​

NUS academic 'truly sorry' for 'flawed and biased' article on recent political controversies, retracts it from website


  • Dr Chan Ying-Kit who wrote an article for East Asia Forum website has issued an apology saying that his oversight of facts led to it conveying false and misleading information to readers
  • The assistant professor from the National University of Singapore has also retracted the article from the site
  • The article was written on his own volition without the university’s knowledge, he added
  • He is "remorseful and deeply sorry" to the university, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau and everyone who was distressed by the article
https://www.channelnewsasia.com/sin...cle-political-controversies-singapore-3781171
 
Last edited:

musclepower

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Why wasn't hunger strike an option for Dr Chan ?

If you don't go for hunger strike, then you have to swallow your own vomit. For academics earning a decent income in public institutions, give them a 泼妇骂 is good enough to bring them on their knees.

For Yang, they need a legal suit to force him to swallow his own vomit. And it looks like Yang will oblige. :rolleyes:
 

mudhatter

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Hello, Pakistan is an official nuclear power (one of 9 in the world). Iran will be the next Muslim state to join the club.

So what? Nuclear weapons don't put bread on the table, don't raise living standards, don't make you a superpower, don't make you rich. North Korea is an example - a 'statelet' according to you. South Korea without nuclear weapons has a GDP 57x that of the North.

Go figure.

Refuted elsewhere.

1. Pakis lack icbm. Pakis missiles can only travel abt 3000 km. Maybe 3500 km if they make some modifications. enough for CECA. They are scared to increase range that can hit zionists. not enough courage to do it publicly. ditto for iranian losers, not enough courage to do it in public. these two moronic countries seem to share a lot of things in common. maybe that's why they lose wars, are cowardly, always incompetent, and always fall short of the very best.

quite unlike stinkies in this regard i must add. i talk of stinkypura under the previous gen leadership of coz. not today's stinky, with >50% foreign immigrant turd world tiong ceca pinoy burmese etc trash populating sh*thole dictatorship one party state.


2. gdp means nothing. indon is one fine example. stinkypura of TODAY is another fine example. all fluff, no substance, fake stats. no achievements, no competence. no exceptional performers, geniuses ,talents, scenries, achievements or anything. just rubbish.


3. ask the iraqis afghans libyans syrians palestinians yemenis etc etc if they'd much rather exchange their family members' lives or their own lost limbs for some bogus meaningless impotent GDP or if they'd much rather their countries possessed ICBM nukes anti satellite missiles before their countries were invaded bombed attacked?

answer should be obvious.

yes, north korean model is a far superior model than the iraqi afghan libyan syrian palestinian yemeni etc etc experience BY FAR, no questions asked.
 

superpower

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Poor guy . He may not be tenured n will not be promoted to Associate Professor .. He may follow the route of George Cherian .!!!
And Vincent Wijeysinghe. SIM did not renew his contract; he had to join a polytechnic in New Zealand, where he's still based.
 

mojito

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Hello, Pakistan is an official nuclear power (one of 9 in the world). Iran will be the next Muslim state to join the club.

So what? Nuclear weapons don't put bread on the table, don't raise living standards, don't make you a superpower, don't make you rich. North Korea is an example - a 'statelet' according to you. South Korea without nuclear weapons has a GDP 57x that of the North.

Go figure.
A nuclear power with out enriched uranium is like a Ferrari with out petroleum. :unsure:
 
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