The most brilliant poster placement in propaganda war

The knives are out, the words are sharp, the war is well and truly underway – and so too the battle for visibility.

The political parties rushed to put up their political posters soon after Nomination Day was over, with the usual face shots of candidates being hung in all the constituencies.

They were the usual posters, really, which we have seen from past elections – smiling faces, all groomed meticulously to look their best. After all, these will be hung out to dry (literally) on streets and poles.

They are made to look good because, you know what they say about “show face” – it can matter when it comes to the vote.

But one political party has turned the poster war on its head with its brilliant placement decision.

The Singapore Democratic Alliance (SDA), which is really a very small opposition party, has not gone the way of the rest, and has instead chosen not to have its candidates faces appear on its posters.

Instead, the posters have words and numbers which remind Singaporeans of the ruling party’s plans and failures.

The decision to place these posters is the brilliance of this – they are placed under the posters of that of Lee Hsien Loong, the secretary general of the People’s Action Party (PAP), who is also the Prime Minister.

Mr Lee’s posters are hung all over Singapore, even in constituencies where he is not the candidate. This has led to questions of whether it is against the elections laws.

In such a case, in the SDA’s placements of its posters, the message is unmistakable – to remind voters of what Mr Lee stood for or what his government has in its plans.

And they are not flattering, when the two posters – Mr Lee’s and the SDA’s – are taken together.

One of them has the number “55” on it – a clear reference to the age of 55 when Singaporeans are supposed to have their CPF returned to them, except that the PAP government has refused to do so, despite its own promise.


The other poster has the number “6.9” on it – alluding to the 6.9 million population which the ruling party is using as a “planning parameter”, an issue which has unsettled and angered Singaporeans since it was revealed in the Population White Paper in 2012, one year after the last elections.

Lin Shiyun had who posted the photos on his Facebook page: