Wednesday, 27 September 2023

We are shifting our daily news to Gutzy.Asia Support us there!

Leadership Renewal in Think Centre: Kick-starting the Working Group for a National Human Rights Institution


16 September 2012

Leadership Renewal in Think Centre: Kick-starting the Working Group for a National Human Rights Institution

Think Centre (TC), Singapore's oldest political association, announced a change of leadership at its 2012 Annual General Meeting (AGM). Immediate Past President Mr Kong Soon Tan, 35, passed the baton to incoming President, Mr Adrian Heok, 39, an independent researcher and consultant.

Other key appointment-holders returned unopposed are Executive Secretary Mr Ted Tan, and its Treasurer, Ms Ong Xiao Yun – both in their early thirties. Veteran human rights activist Mr Sinapan Samydorai, one of TC's founders, currently, the director of Asean affairs, will continue in his capacity, and also contribute as part of TC Team to establish the independent Civil Society led Singapore Working Group for a National Human Rights Institution.

The AGM opened with a minute of silence to mark the memory of the late Christopher Neo, another TC's founders who passed away last month.

In his outgoing President's address, Tan highlighted TC's founding principles and vision towards a vibrant civil society in Singapore. He paid tribute to Christopher Neo and exhorted members to follow in Neo's example of championing political consciousness, human rights education and protection. During his term, Tan continued TC's human rights capacity-building efforts locally, regionally and internationally. He oversaw TC's contribution to the anti-ISA movement, anti-death penalty campaign, protection of rights of migrant workers and upholding of cultural rights. More notably, Tan represented Singapore and TC in delivering an oral statement at the U.N Human Rights Council's first Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Singapore in 2011. He also initiated an informal platform for political exchange between Generation X and Y civil society activists and political party members.

Incoming TC President, Heok conveyed his appreciation to current and past leadership teams, members and friends alike as he looks forward to their continued support and contribution. He reiterated TC's commitment to the U.N human rights framework and urged members advance TC's mission in raising greater awareness, protection of human rights and encouraging the adoption of a rights-based mindset in Singapore and the region.

Specifically, TC is establishing the independent Civil Society led Singapore Working Group for a National Human Rights Institution. The Working Group is envisioned to comprise key independent civil society group representatives who are committed to promoting and protecting human rights in Singapore and prepared to engage all relevant stakeholders. The working group will act as a "Human Rights Watch Group" by monitoring the implementation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the recommendations in the report of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). The working group will give attention to on-going thematic issues of concern in Singapore, for example, retention of death penalty; space for freedom of expression and assembly; labour and migrant workers rights; discrimination and social injustice among others.

TC is also encouraging Singapore to establish a National Human Rights Commission with an initial focus of promoting equal opportunity; public human rights awareness programme and human rights education in schools. The commission would develop a comprehensive framework for implementing the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for all to enjoy a better quality of life by ensuring the full dignity and rights of every individual and community.

With its new leadership in place, TC intends to focus on engaging Singapore's citizenry, the Government and regional civil society in building a truly caring community where no one will be discriminated against.

Adrian Heok
Think Centre

Towards A Vibrant Political Society
E-mail: [email protected]

Latest posts

Election surprises and certainties: Dissecting Tharman’s presidential win

In the 2023 Presidential Election, Mr. Tharman Shanmugaratnam secured a stunning 70.4% landslide victory, surprising many, including himself. Despite expectations that TKL would win the opposition votes, voters from both camps showed a preference for Tharman's charisma and perceived competency. As Singapore reflects on the outcome, questions arise about the election's fairness and the real implications of Tharman's dominant win.

Volunteer as a Polling and Counting Agent for Singapore’s 2023 Presidential Election

For the upcoming Singapore Presidential Election on 1st September, members of the civil society have spearheaded an initiative to strengthen our democratic fabric. We invite committed individuals to join us as Polling and Counting Agents, standing together for a transparent, fair, and just election. This vote counting exercise, organized by members of civil society, is not specifically in support of Mr Tan Kin Lian, a candidate in the upcoming Presidential Election. It's an exercise in active citizenry. Nonetheless, Mr Tan endorses this initiative, which hinges on his candidacy, championing transparency, and has given permission for the results to be shared publicly.

Reflections from the Centenary: The Legacy of LKY and Singapore’s Future

Gilbert Goh reflects on the LKY centenary event: an inspiring showcase of a leader's global legacy juxtaposed against current challenges, urging Singapore to continue its path of progress.

Lim Tean advocates for Tan Kin Lian: A visionary leader for Singapore’s Presidency

In his speech at Mr Tan Kin Lian's launch of his presidential bid, Mr Lim Tean passionately championed the need for a truly Independent President. Highlighting Mr Tan Kin Lian's unique credentials and genuine concern for the wellbeing of Singaporeans, the Peoples Voice leader emphasized the pressing challenges of rising living costs and job insecurities faced by the public. Mr Lim depicted Mr Tan Kin Lian as a beacon of hope for the nation, advocating for a leader who genuinely understands and represents the people’s aspirations.

Tan Jee Say endorses Tan Kin Lian for President: A courageous, genuine, and humble...

In advocating for a truly representative leader, Tan Jee Say underscored Tan Kin Lian's humility, courage, and genuine dedication. Highlighting the pressing need for restored public trust and effective independence, Tan Jee Say emphasized that Tan Kin Lian, as the 'People's President', would bring back hope to Singaporeans and champion true democracy

Tan Kin Lian’s pledge: Rekindling unity and charting a vigorous future for Singapore

In the press conference to announce his bid for the Singapore presidency, Tan Kin Lian emphasizes safeguarding Singapore's reserves and strengthening public service integrity. Drawing on his 30-year leadership at NTUC Income, he envisions a future with affordable living, accessible housing, and job stability, pledging collaboration with the government for a united nation.

Strengthening Singapore’s political foundations: A call to action by Leong Mun Wai on Singapore’s...

Leong Mun Wai urges Singaporeans to strengthen political checks and balances, emphasizing, 'The best is yet to be for Singapore if we dare to make the right decision in upcoming elections.

Trending posts