With the accelerating tension between Malaysia and Singapore over disputed waters, I cannot help but think that unity between all of our elected representatives is all important. In view of this, I am heartened to read the statement issued by the Workers’ Party expressing grave concerns over the rising tensions and expressing solidarity with all Singaporeans.
It is important to remember that at this point, the Workers’ Party still has the albatross of a high profile lawsuit against its own town councils hanging around its neck. I would hope that just as the Workers’ Party would like to stand united with all Singaporeans, that the Peoples’ Action Party (PAP) will similarly recognise that party politics aside, the Workers’ Party are members of the government too. At this point, I would hope that all differences be set aside and everyone in power can work together for the good of Singapore.
While the lawsuit is not directly related to the PAP dominated government, the whole saga erupted at the behest of the Housing Development Board (HDB) which is a statutory board – in other words, government affiliated.
Even if the government is removed from the process in paper, is it possible for this whole debacle to have turned into a lawsuit without the government’s sanction? Some have speculated that the lawsuit was potentially motivated to take down the Workers’ Party ahead of the rumoured general elections next year. While there is no hard evidence that this is indeed the case, the government does have a history of taking out defamation suits against opposition politicians.
Friction with our neighbour, Malaysia aside, there are also other issues in Singapore to contend with – such as the rising inequality in Singapore. So much so that the issue of a lack of workers’ rights have been raised in the Australian Parliament! With these arguably more pressing issues in sight, it would perhaps be a good time for the government to put aside differences with opposition parties and focus instead on issues that affect our country as opposed to a seeming dispute between political parties.
Perhaps it might be a good time for the Workers’ Party and the PAP to issue a joint statement of solidarity at this juncture. Whether or not the PAP likes the Workers’ Party, it is a fact that members of both parties collectively form our elected Parliament. Even if they are in the minority, they are still elected by the people. .