Yesterday (9 Mar), Senior Minister of State for Finance and Law Indranee Rajah made a renewed attack on her Facebook page against Sylvia Lim with a post titled, 'GST Hike: An Honourable Course of Conduct or not?'.
She went on to piece together the events after Ms Lim had spoken last week and supported Minister Grace Fu's accusation that Ms Lim's conduct was not honourable.
"After the facts have been made clear by four ministers, after it had been shown that her (Ms Lim's) suspicion was wrong, after she herself admitted that she may have been wrong, and after her own leader Mr Low said it is clear now the Government had no intention to raise GST immediately, shouldn’t she have withdrawn the allegation and apologised?" Indranee asked.
"Yet Ms Lim did neither. That is why the Leader of the House (Grace Fu) said this was not the honourable conduct expected of MPs."
Chee Hong Tat's turn
Today (10 Mar), it was Senior Minister of State for Health and Communications and Information Chee Hong Tat's turn to attack Ms Lim.
Writing to Singaporeans, Chee Hong Tat wrote on PAP's own website, "I will address the question why Government decided to take up the matter (of wanting Ms Lim to admit her mistakes) during the Budget Debate."
He again went on to recap the events about Ms Lim alleging that the government had floated a "test balloon" about raising the GST.
He reminded Singaporeans that after his PAP government had clarified the facts, Ms Lim did admit that her earlier suspicion "may have been wrong". He also reminded Singaporeans that WP Low Thia Khiang had also acknowledged that Ms Lim’s suspicion wasn’t really correct.
"Why was it important for the Government to pursue the matter?" Chee Hong Tat asked.
"Because it needed to remove any doubt that the Government had intended to raise GST immediately, but then backtracked when it was called out that this would contradict previous Government statements."
"The underlying sting of that allegation was that the Government was being dishonest with the people. This is both false and vicious, and goes to the heart of Government’s integrity," he defended his PAP government.
Chee Hong Tat himself throws suspicion on WP
Chee Hong Tat then "suspects" that WP may be using this incident for political gains.
He said, "Had the Government not pursued the matter in Parliament, most people would have overlooked Ms Lim’s 'test balloon' comment. However, the WP could later use it to great effect for political attacks, including during the next General Election."
He further alleged that WP would later denigrate PAP with the following statements if the PAP did not pursue the matter:
- "The Government had secretly intended to raise GST immediately, but backed down because of public reaction"
- "The WP made this charge in Parliament, and the Government did not rebut it, so it must be true"
- "This Government cannot be trusted, either on taxes or any other policies"
- "Vote against the PAP to teach them a lesson, and stop them from raising the GST after the elections"
He concluded his writings by proudly proclaiming that the PAP had gotten Ms Lim to admit and Mr Low to confirm that her suspicions were wrong.
"She had no basis to accuse the Government of intending to raise GST immediately and then backtracking," he said. "The WP can now no longer rely on this falsehood to attack the Government’s credibility and trustworthiness."
It's not known what WP would say in the next GE but Chee Hong Tat could somehow look into the crystal ball and predict the future, it seems. It's also not known why PAP continues to be fixated in "fixing" Ms Lim.
Perhaps that would make Singaporeans forget about the impending GST hike? What do you think?