Minister K Shanmugam has tried hard to justify the construction of a $110 million new Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC). “New Chinese cultural centre essential to Singapore’s success”, says K Shanmugam”.
But Shanmugam must be stretching our imagination to claim that the new SCCC is “essential to Singapore’s success”. Is he implying that Singapore was not successful before the SCCC was built?
Since a new cultural centre is essential to Singapore’s success for the majority race, why not construct multi-million dollar cultural centres for Indians, Malays, Eurasians, Thais, Filipinos, etc? Could other races help Singapore to succeed if they lack similar essential cultural centres? Why spend so much to help only Singaporean Chinese and not other races, including new citizens?
Wow, so now the recipe for success is in our Law Minister’s hands?
Shanmugam claims that “Singapore’s strength comes from its individual cultures – Chinese, Malay, Indian ..” and that “We are not China Chinese, we are not India Indians, we are not Malaysian Malays”. “We are Singaporean Chinese, we are Singaporean Indians and we are Singaporean Malays. And that is different from all these countries,” says Shanmugam.
If it’s so important to stay rooted in our Singaporean Chinese culture because “culture is key to helping Singaporeans navigate an uncertain global environment”, why is the PAP diluting our unique Singaporean culture with the mass import of China Chinese?
When PAP wants to construct very costly buildings using tax dollars, it says culture is essential. But when it wants to increase the foreigner population to increase our GDP, our success suddenly doesn’t depend on our Singaporean culture. PAP can’t have its cake and eat it and should clarify if Singaporean culture is essential for our success.
When Shanmugam says “And that is different from all these countries”, is he referring to the “kiasu, kiasi” culture of Singaporean Chinese which is absent in China Chinese who won’t think twice about striking because they also don’t “kia chenghu”?
Shanmugam also says that it will make Singaporean Chinese strong by “drawing from 5,000 years of history”. Shanmugam should not anyhow assume that Singaporean Chinese are not strong because few of us have drawn from China’s 5000 years of history. And why should I, a Singaporean Chinese, be told by Shanmugam to draw from China’s 5000 years of history when there’s hardly anything in common between a China Chinese and me?
Are Singaporean Indians not strong because many also did not draw from their 5,300 years of history? Or Singaporean Malays from Malaysia’s shorter history?
In his attempt to cook up some justifications for using 110 million tax dollars to construct the new SCCC, Minister Shanmugam appears not to know what he is talking about.
The new SCCC helps to create really good jobs – 3 persons are paid more than $100,000. Although SCCC has received almost $3 million in grants and land rental subvention, it should be more transparent in the disclosure because “more than $100,000” could mean many times more.
At the annual CNY gathering, “more than 800 community (PAP affiliated) leaders, government officials and representatives from .. jointly organised by SCCC, … and Business China”.
Business China is one of 2 SCCC partners.
Business China was set up in 2007 using tax dollars to further the interests of GLCs. Its Board of Directors consists of 7 ministers and a former minister. Its patron is none other than PM Lee. Coincidentally, PM Lee is also SCCC’s patron. A very busy man, our PM.