20140827 PAP’s governance failure makes PAP a liability to our country

Singaporeans who continue to be apologists for PAP’s governance failure had better start to scrutinise PAP’s policies objectively. The longer we continue to accommodate PAP’s epic failures, the worse it will be for our children and future generations of Singaporeans. Forgiving as Singaporeans are, we must know when to say ‘enough is enough’.

PAP’s parliamentary majority means there is no meaningful debate but only a PAP monologue. The questions raised by opposition party members have not even scratched the surface of PAP’s opacity. By the time they do, chronic issues will have been compounded and Singapore may have fallen off the cliff. It is the responsibility of every citizen to understand what the PAP stands for and its objectives.

Citizens should be wary of a political party which has thrived for 5 decades on:

Zero transparency
Zero accountability
Politicising the civil service to perpetuate its power
Politicising grassroots organisations to perpetuate its power
etc.

1) Zero transparency – with zero transparency, PAP is able to conceal vital data and hide policy failures eg immigration policy with a current annual intake of 30,000 PRs but 10,000 also leaving every year since 2000. It also prevents citizens from the possession of factual knowledge of where, how much and how our reserves are invested. Even ex President Nathan, who was supposed to safeguard our past reserves did not even know they were used 55 times. In reality, not a single MP, besides PAP’s inner circle, has factual knowledge of our reserves other than the information which has been (allowed) published.

With zero transparency, opposition party members do not have access to vital information to question the government in parliament.

2) Zero accountability – In a truly functioning democracy, failures are given the boot but our pseudo democracy allows them to be recycled into the system. It perpetuates chronic issues which are self evident and experienced by ordinary citizens today.

MND – From the chart (below), it should be clear the MND never had any foresight or long term planning. A five year period could see HDB constructing units ranging from as high as 158,621 to as low as 30,069. Planning appears to be a numbers game which is within the capability of any Tom, Dick or Harry.

PAP considers this long-term planning.

Source: HDB statistics (page 2)

Citizens are now enslaved to 30-year mortgages at much higher property prices because of PAPs haphazard planning. Were those responsible such as ex MND ministers Mah Bow Tan (under built), Lim Hng Kiang (loves to build) and their permanent secretaries held accountable? Why is Lim Hng Kiang still in the cabinet and Mah still an MP, both receiving tax dollars, despite screwing up citizens’ lives?

Current MND minister Khaw cannot be said to be doing a good job because he is only resolving the issues created by his PAP predecessor. If by merely increasing the number of public housing units is considered a job well done, then any ordinary citizen could be a minister.

MOH – Khaw was the ex MOH minister (2004 to 2011) who was somehow not aware the number of hospital beds actually decreased by more than 500 right under his watch. Nathan did not know reserves had been used 55 times, Mah Bow Tan did not know an increasing population required to be housed and Khaw did not know hospital patients require hospital beds! What was Khaw’s focus? Revenue from medical tourism for Singapore Inc?

In any democratic country, a failure of this magnitude would have been booted out. But the PAP loves the game of musical chairs so much that it has given Khaw a second chance to test his capability at another ministry!

Current MOH minister Gan Kim Yong is now having a hard time addressing the issue of high healthcare costs and shortage of hospital beds, no thanks to his predecessor Khaw. Gan, in turn, helmed and left the MOM with issues to be resolved by current MOM minister Tan Chuan Jin.

The worst would of course be PM Lee Hsien Loong whose predecessor, Goh Chok Tong, had left him with the huge mess we are in. PM Lee has displayed little leadership, preferring to sue cleaner Roy (assuming he has not left the job) instead of focusing on improving governance issues.

3) Politicising the civil service to perpetuate its power

The PAP uses huge financial rewards to attract like-minded, self-serving citizens into the civil service. PAP’s influence over the civil service also prevents vital information from being published. Without such information, there is no meaningful debate in Parliament.

In PAP’s push to increase the population to 6.9 million, the NPTD has been using skewed data to create a public buy in. There are immigration policy issues which the NPTD has refused to address.

PAP’s growth strategy is simply to increase the population to increase demand, creating an illusion of wealth amid a sea of suffering. Remove the population increase shortcut and our GDP will collapse. The KPIs of politicians and civil servants are all tied to economic performance. Both are a complete disgrace for rubbing each other’s backs while citizens continue to suffer.

4) Politicising grassroots organisations to perpetuate its power

It is an open secret our grassroots organisations are self serving and controlled by the People’s Association (PA). PA’s board of management comprises PM Lee and only PAP ministers and MPs. Not a single opposition MP is on PA’s board although opposition MPs represent 40%, or about 800,000 Singaporean voters.

Scrutiny of PAP will improve governance

Citizens have every right to question and blame the PAP government because it monopolises ALL state resources. When public housing prices skyrocket and the alternative of private housing is simply out of reach for the masses, are we supposed to blame ourselves?

By scrutinising the PAP and its policies, citizens will be able to understand how all the problems have been created. By voting in the PAP as our government, won’t it continue to implement policies which are only in its interests but detrimental to ordinary citizens’?

By not voting for the PAP, citizens will send a strong message to the government not to recycle failures and only then will our system improve. We cannot afford to continue to hope for miracles from failures.

There will be a strong tendency to compare with neighbouring countries but we should bear in mind our politicians’ salaries are not peanuts. It is also illogical to compare governing our 716 km² apple to oranges which could be 100 times our size.

Conditioned by the mainstream media, many citizens also ignorantly question the credibility of opposition MPs when in fact we should be questioning PAP MPs, eg

Sylvia Lim has been doing grassroots work since 2001, an NMP since 2006 and MP since 2011. Why is Chan Chun Sing and Tan Chuan Jin, both with zero grassroots experience, zero relevant experience and had much lesser parliamentary experience catapulted into ministerial positions? Are they serving the PAP or citizens?

– Why is our childish PAP MP Tin Pei Ling even a Government Parliament Committee (Health and Home Affairs and Law) member? With zero relevant experience, aren’t there better qualified MPs such as Chen Show Mao or Pritam Singh?
etc.

The PAP should not attempt to stretch our imagination with its reasons for choosing less qualified GPC members. This may make our toes laugh.

It is more important for Singaporeans to start questioning the PAP because it has been scraping the bottom of the barrel for its current lot of MPs. After all, only PAP policies will be implemented.  

Image source

The PAP appoints only its MPs to cabinet and other important positions and prevents better qualified opposition MPs from increasing their knowledge of governance. Subsequently, this becomes self fulfilling.

PAP’s capitalistic DNA will not change. PAP is only interested in perpetuating its power and any policy benefits to citizens will be incidental . PAP’s governance failure is a fact and this has resulted from PAP repeatedly recycling failures into our system. As the PAP continues down its 50-year path of zero transparency and accountability, citizens must recognise it has become a liability to OUR country.

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4 Responses to 20140827 PAP’s governance failure makes PAP a liability to our country

  1. wongcheokwan says:

    A Major Failure: CPF vs M2.

    Up to mid `1980s CPF was just a few % points below M2.By 2014 M2 was $500B and CPF was

    $235B. This means CPF crashed 213% BELOW M2. If somebody have not eaten up CPF accrued

    returns, our CPF balance should be close to $500B.

    • phillip ang says:

      What all citizens can do is continue to press for transparency. I should say Roy has done a very good job in presenting data which is easily understood. The CPF is a failure but we dont really need data to prove it because the majority are experiencing it’s failure. The PAP thinks it can simply tweak and make people happy. They are wrong.

  2. Isupportyou says:

    Looking at the chart, it is not difficult to see that about 20,000 units of flats were built from 1991 to 1995 annually. It was ramped up to about 32,000 units annually from 1996 to 2000 which could have resulted in overbuilt. Correction efforts was taken by building about 55,000 in total from 2001 to 2005 followed by another 30,000 in total for the next 5 years between 2005 to 2010 when LHL became the PM. This has resulted in outcry by the young couples on the soaring of the housing prices which has caused a drastic dip in the PAP popularity in 2011 election. Is this what we expect from the multi-millions salaried ministers and the high profiled civil servants? Common sense tells us that we don’t need to pay millions to screw up the quality of life fellow Singaporeans. I believe there is a lot of us who can do better with much lower salary.

    PAP keep telling Singaporeans that Singapore need to pay multi millions salary to attract elites to join politics to serve the people. It is as though all the high salaried ministers were already earning higher than what they are earning now before becoming servants of the people? Maybe the government would bother to share with the people what is their take home remuneration in details before and after. This would certainly help to justify the claim well and serve to rebut any allegation and will also achieve absolute, clear transparency. But, we are very sure some of the new ministers certainly do not meet this criteria.

    What really puzzled me was if the LHL said that the government, which is elected by the people and is the servant to the people, why is the government not giving the same priority to the citizens’ cpf money when it comes to how to grow the return of our compulsary saving for retirement when they have Temasek capable of returning 16% annually? We always regard Singapore government is much more superior and capable than our counterpart, Malaysia. However, when you compare their epf return with our cpf return, i think it takes a lot of shine off from the Singapore government. What is there to be proud of the government if it even failed to grow our heart-earned money(cpf) whole heartedly (equal or better return than others, 7 to 9%)? Why do we still need so many board members sitting in the cpf board if they are not responsible to grow our cpf money? We don’t need an expensive board to invest our cpf money on the SSGS with no maturity date.

    Maybe what the government should do is to treat cpf fund as another shareholder of GIC and Temasek (the other shareholder being our reserves) so that whatever good or bad return shall be shared between the 2 instead of being mingled into the reserve by introducing a bridge called”SSGS”? Those ministers who do not have the right qualifications should not be sitting in the boards. The total combined fund shall be run by proven fund managers with good track records.

    Government always say that our cpf money as a loan to the government is guaranteed by the government with a risk-free return annually.

    I do not think that this is right as we all know that when a person borrow money from a bank, he cannot guarantee his own loan but he needs a guarantor. Similarly, when a company takes a loan from the bank, the bank requires the active directors to be the guarantors for the loan.

    Therefore, how can a government guarantees it own loan when the money it owns and borrows belong to the people of Singapore? Should things goes wrong, it is the tax payers’ money that will be called upon and remember, it is not guaranteed by our elite ministers personally?

  3. phillip ang says:

    Maybe it was due to HDB overbuilding that Goh Chok Tong opened the floodgates for immigrants.
    Why did the HDB overbuild when it was aware of housing demand/supply? Were they so focused on the bottom line like how much they can rip off HDB buyers? Whatever it is, PAP has lousy planning.
    It’s about time citizens start to question if PAP is really ‘superior and more capable than our counterparts’.
    Citizens should not take PAP’s word at face value but first look at the evidence. In GIC’s case, why is there no data on any investment in GIC? Would any shareholder accept claims of superior returns without any knowledge of where the capital is invested?
    The reserves invested by GIC belongs to all Singaporeans who are collectively GIC’s shareholders.
    It’s a wonder how the PAP could even think citizens will just accept claims on its 5/10/20 year returns.
    When we start to question, which the PAP is not used to, more questions start to crop up.
    The CPF situation simply doesn’t make any sense.
    The PAP will continue to prevent the disclosure of vital information and the only way is to have more opposition members in parliament and hopefully a coalition government.
    PAP has hidden information for 5 decades so one should not have high expectations for PAP to publish any relevant information soon.

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