Lim Tean speaking at the Water hike protest at Hong Lim Park (Photo - Terry Xu)

The buck stops with Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan, says Lim Tean on the train collision which caused 25 over injuries

Lawyer and political activist, Lim Tean has posted a video of him speaking on the recent collision of two trains at Joo Koon MRT station that caused 25 reported injured casualties.

In his speech, he commented that the incident is indicative of where Singapore stands today and shows how the country on the surface, everything is gleaming and beautiful but, it hides a serious problem.

He further comments that Singapore leaders refuse to be accountable or to take responsibility and call for the resignation of Minister Khaw Boon Wan, stating that the buck stops at him.

Mr Lim also calls for a commission of inquiry to be convened by the President to look into the incident and volunteers to be counsel to cross-examine the witnesses if there should be one.

Below is the transcript of what Mr Lim said in the video. 

As you know this morning a serious incident happened at Joo Koon Station involving the collision of 2 trains

Now, about 25 people were injured, some of them sustained very major injuries including limb fractures, joint dislocation.

Now this is not the first time such a serious incident has happened.

As all of you know, last month there was a serious flooding incident at Bishun Station.

Our citizens have less and less confidence in a major public transport; the MRT today.

After the incident today, some jokingly said online that maybe it’s time we all have to take out travel insurance for travelling on the MRT.

But I think the incident today indicative of where our country is at the moment, and where our country has descended into. And it is a sad state of affairs.

Channel News Asia reported the incident but deleted many of the unfavourable comments.

My fellow Singaporeans, we have become a Potemkin country.

Now many of you would know, the phrase Potemkin is named after a military leader and a statesman in 16th century Russia. Potemkin became the Governor Lieutenant of the southern region of Russia, and his favourite trick, ruse, was to erect these facades, village facades, brightly painted apparently populated by very happy well-fed people.

But they hid a serious problem, because Russia in those days was suffering, the people were suffering from famine, they didn’t have enough to eat, but he did this to please his superiors. And Potemkin was apparently the lover, the consort of Catherine The Great, the Empress so she was deceived.

On a famous tour down the Crimea in 1777 or thereabouts, she was impressed by what she saw erected on the river fronts, beautiful villages, painted nicely, with apparently happy people.

And isn’t that indicative of what our nation has come to?

You know, on the surface everything is gleaming everything is beautiful but, it hides a serious problem and the MRT problem has been going on for the better part of a decade.

But our leaders refuse to be accountable or to take responsibility.

We have a Transport Minister today that comes out with all sorts of excuses as to why he is personally not accountable.

He gives long-winded speeches in Parliament, he absolves the government, he pushes everything down to the company involved, to the culture, and the leadership in the company blames it on cultural differences.

You know what Mr. Khaw? You once berated the Workers Party in Parliament over short-comings in Town Council management and you alluded to the fact that in Japan when the leadership has failed the leaders publicly acknowledge their mistakes, take a bow, and sometimes would even do harakiri

I suggest that you apologise to the Singapore public. You take a bow. And it is time for you to resign.  There have been too many failures under your leadership,

I would not go to the extent of suggesting harakiri. No-one is that extreme. But it is time for you to go. And the same goes for the top management of SMRT.  It is ridiculous, the situation has become ridiculous.
And Singaporeans are not going to stand for it anymore.

There is an English saying “the fish rots from the head down”

The Americans have a more pithy statement “the buck stops here”

It was a sign that President Harry Truman proudly displayed at the front of his desk in the Oval office. So don’t blame your subordinates.  Don’t go and suggest silly things like an amnesty. It is time you take responsibility.

And Madame President, I personally hold you accountable for this debacle as well, You campaigned on a slogan of Do Good Do Together.

You said that you were going to be independent and that you were going to act for the wider interests of the Singapore people. When the flooding incident happened last month, I was the first person to call for a commission of inquiry. And you have powers. Under the Commissions of Inquiry Act Chapter 48, under Section 21c, to call for a Commission of Inquiry relating to any matter that pertains to the public welfare of the Singapore people yet you did nothing, you did absolutely nothing.

I would like to add “Madame President, if after this incident you still do nothing, your integrity and competence will be called into serious question.

I personally volunteer to be counsel to the inquiry and to cross-examine witnesses to get to the truth of the matter.
What we need now is accountability and ACTION to put right our MRT.

Below is the video featuring Mr Lim with his thoughts on the matter.