In response to the statement released by the Lee siblings this morning, certain outlets have attempted to play down the matter as a private affair. In a recent interview, for example, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean said that: “There are so many issues, problems and challenges we are facing as a country. We need to focus and work on them,” thereby suggesting that the Lee siblings’ statement is not something we should be focusing on right now.
Furthermore, the mainstream media has labelled the Lee siblings’ statement as concerning the “Oxley Road dispute”, thereby reinforcing the idea that this is a mere family property dispute.
Serious allegations & a matter of grave national importance
DPM Teo was wrong; this is a matter of great national importance – and something that deserves our attention. The property dispute may have been the trigger, but the allegations that Lee siblings made are very serious.
Let us be clear: the Prime Minister has been accused of abuse of power, dishonesty as well as nepotism by his own siblings. These accusations have been conveniently ignored by the mainstream media even though they are very serious allegations that, if true, will necessarily undermine public confidence in the Prime Minister. For example, the mainstream media has ignored the accusation that the PM used his position to procure a deed of gift from Minister Lawrence Wong, who is himself an up-and-coming Minister, and a possible future Prime Minister.
If the allegations are true, then we should we worried – if the Prime Minister is capable of behaving this way towards his own siblings, through the use of threats and abuses of power, what does this show about his character and how he might treat Singaporeans as a whole?
“if PM can misuse his official power to abuse his siblings who can fight back, what else can he do to ordinary citizens.”
This follow up statement from Lee Wei Ling proves my point:
“If it were merely a family affair, we would not have taken it public. The main message is not Hsien Yang & I fearing what PM will do to us. The most important point I want to put across is if PM can misuse his official power to abuse his siblings who can fight back, what else can he do to ordinary citizens.“
Furthermore, as I argued in a previous article, the Lee siblings’ concerns do not necessarily appear to be limited to the Prime Minister himself. If indeed their concerns in fact apply to how political power is wielded at the the upper echelons of our political establishment as a whole, then I must say that all of us Singaporeans have much to worry about.
Silence on the part of opposition politicians
Numerous commentators, including this website, have acknowledged the gravity of the situation, and how serious the allegations are. However, no opposition politician has spoken on the matter yet. This is problematic; the Lee siblings have given them a clear opportunity to identify what appears to be a very big systemic problem with the existing political establishment in our country. Surely it is the job of our opposition politicians to speak up on the matter and demand answers. After all, this is what the people elected them into power for. What are they now afraid of?
In any case, while opposition politicians may refuse to take a stand, we will take our own stand on the matter.
We must have an independent public inquiry on the matter
I stress the word independent. This inquiry must be carried out by non-PAP individuals whose interest is purely to determine whether the accusations against the Prime Minister are true.
If PM Lee is innocent, I am sure he has nothing to hide as well
The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) ought to be involved, or at the very least, monitor the situation closely, since there is at least some potential for uncovering material that might implicate the Prime Minister. Unfortunately, it is questionable whether it would actually do so, since the CPIB falls under the Prime Minister’s Office. Nonetheless, I believe an investigation is due. I recall some Ministers noting that surveillance and detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA) is an appropriate safeguard, since innocent people have nothing to hide. If PM Lee is innocent, I am sure he has nothing to hide as well – so why not start an investigation?
The Singaporean public deserves to know the truth.
The Singaporean public deserves to know the truth. Are these allegations against the Prime Minister true? This is a matter of great national importance; not a mere family dispute.
Many PAP members I know have responded with personal attacks and conspiracy theories against the Lee siblings. Others have tried to play down the matter. Hence, I want to conclude with a message to my friends in the PAP.
If you are truly committed to the values of the Party that Lee Kuan Yew believed in and fought for, and if you are sincere about ensuring good governance, and making Singapore a better place, then, instead of protecting your own interests, and being afraid to offend those in positions of authority, I urge you to speak up, as I have. It is your duty to do so, both in your capacity as a Singapore citizen, and as a person who truly cares about the future of your Party.
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