Health Minister Gan Kim Yong has insulted himself by expecting the public to believe that “revealing staff involved in Hep C outbreak will breed blame culture”.
Gan also insisted that by revealing the names of negligent staff and directors wound not “contribute to better care of patients”. He was pretending to be stupid: the issue is one of transparency. Gan clearly believed that the government was not accountable to the public as well as the families of 8 SGH patients who had died because of SGH’s/MOH’s negligence.
In Parliament, NCMP Leon Perera had asked Gan:
– the names of SGH and MOH staff who had been disciplined
– the individual penalties each received
– the reasons for these individual penalties/warnings.
Long-winded Gan took Parliament for another ride and gave a half-baked reply. In fact, Gan did not want to reply and made it clear when he said “instead of focusing on naming the individuals .., we need to encourage a learning culture to make our hospitals as safe as possible..”.
Gan continued going off tangent and wasted more time in educating Parliament on government disciplinary measures, eg a stern warning is more serious than a warning, it has a negative bearing on one’s career, including future promotion, blah blah blah..
Gan should not have assumed amnesia is an epidemic in Singapore: alternative media had recently revealed that SAF Captain Chia was promoted within a year of being court-martialled. So how many SGH/MOH directors and staff will be getting their promotion within a year or half a year since it was only a warning? Will there be a ‘make-up’ bonus?
Did a stern warning result in a $100,000 fine or only $1,000? Isn’t a $10,000 fine a slap on the wrist for civil servants who earn between $500,000 to $1 million? Something is clearly not right when Gan refused to disclose information which would have been public information in functioning democracies.
How did Gan know that the “greatest penalty to staff is the pain and regret of the Hep C incident”? Did Gan or his subordinates even interview negligent staff and directors to establish their feelings of “pain and regret”? If not, was Gan telling half-truths or perhaps even lying? Gan can’t expect the public to trust our institutions with his refusal to come clean on transparency.
Aggrieved citizens need closure, especially where the cause of death was negligence, and I guess many have been increasingly frustrated by a government which hides behind self-enacted laws and propaganda.
Gan should not have downplayed the Hepatitis C incident: there were 8 deaths. NCMP Perera’s questions do not deserve half baked replies.
Have other citizens been frustrated by PAP’s high-handed approach to the extent that some have publicly vented their anger by vandalising HDB blocks…
.. or doing so verbally during an election rally. video link
It’s about time the PAP learn to respect Singaporeans or who knows, it may invite more crude ways of ‘engagement’.