The People’s Power Party (PPP) posted a New Year message on its Facebook page on 31 December, 2018 stating that the democratic situation in Singapore will further worsen in 2019.
The political party was first formed in 2015 and contested in the General Election 2015 at Choa Chu Kang GRC. The statement, which was written by Secretary General Goh Meng Seng, mentioned that there are a few areas of concern for the party, with the first being the control on media freedom by the People’s Action Party (PAP). He says the party has reservations over the use of Administrative power to geo-block sites.
Goh wrote, “We believe that the various acts are aimed to send chilling fear to Singapore dissidents and opposition supporters to curb their sharing of legitimate criticisms and anti-PAP commentaries.”
In addition to that, the intention to pass the “Fake News” law this year is also a way for PAP to curb freedom of speech and expression, said Goh.
The statement also revealed how the PPP is concerned of the competency of the 4G leaders of PAP in dealing with important and sensitive diplomatic issues with neighbouring countries.
“Diplomacy has always been the pillar of our success as a small Nation in establishing a network of strength and support in both mutually beneficial economic and political development with other countries in the world,” explained Goh.
Lastly, PPP also raised its concern on how the cost of living and business cost have increased tremendously over the past few years under PAP’s rule.
“We believe that a combination of High Cost and Economic Downturn will hit Singaporeans very hard if PAP doesn’t change its High Cost policies soon,” Goh concluded.
Read the full message below:
New Year Message 2019
2018 is a terribly challenging year for Singapore’s Democratic development. Although 2018 is coming to an end but we believe the Democratic situation will further worsen in 2019.
The Online Citizen and The Independent SG have been targeted by the PAP Administration and its proxy, NTUC, which has claimed to have “symbiotic relationship” with PAP. On the other hand, while we would support the Prime Minister to sue States Time Review (STR) and its editor for the criminal defamatory report which it has put up, we have reservations over the use of the Administrative power to geo-block the site altogether. This has created a precedent for PAP to geo-block any site which is critical of it. We also have great reservation over the Prime Minister’s decision to sue someone who has been misled by the report and had mistakenly shared it. The Prime Minister should take legal actions against STR and its editor instead.
We believe that the various acts are aimed to send chilling fear to Singapore dissidents and opposition supporters to curb their sharing of legitimate criticisms and anti-PAP commentaries. PAP’s intention to pass the “Fake News” law in 2019 is also an attempt to curb freedom of speech and expression. Any narrative that is contrary to PAP’s version could well be classified as “Fake News” and this law will give PAP the power to charge anyone who dare to put up such narratives!
On the other hand, we are also extremely concerned of the competency of the 4G leaders of PAP in dealing with important and sensitive diplomatic issues with our neighbouring countries. The recent unnecessary over-reaction to the sea boundary dispute as well as the dispute over airspace control has exposed the pure diplomatic incompetency and potentially dangerous political posturing of PAP’s 4G leaders. While Singaporeans understand the need to close rank and stand united when we face external threats but we will always want to stand on the higher moral grounds. There is absolutely no necessity to fan frenzy Nationalistic feelings when such fire may get out of control and translate into mindless agitations on the ground which in turn result in irreparable damage on bilateral relationship.
It is well known to the world that Singapore has the strongest arm forces in this region and there is absolutely no necessity to flex our muscle in demonstration of protest towards any surrounding country over any issues. Diplomacy has always been the pillar of our success as a small Nation in establishing a network of strength and support in both mutually beneficial economic and political development with other countries in the world. The 4G leaders of PAP must be reminded that our military might is established to prevent war and provide stability instead of starting any war or for bullying others into submission.
Looking forward into 2019, we hope that PAP will garner the wisdom and help from people with more experience in diplomacy to deal with bilateral disputes with Malaysia.
We do not expect PAP to change its strategic attempt to curb Freedom of Expression on the New media but we believe that only a good beating of PAP in the coming General Elections in 2019 or 2020 will send a strong message to PAP that it doesn’t pay to do more harm to the Nation’s Democratic development. PAP’s broken promise of “Light Touch” on internet chatters has turned into “Deadly Touch”.
We also foresee a dark economic cloud over the horizon for 2019 but under PAP’s rule, cost of living and business cost have increased tremendously over the past few years. They have just increased public transport fares despite of lower fuel price and the millions of indirect subsidies given to public transport companies! Singapore has remained as the most expensive city in the world for a few years now. This is the result when Singaporeans gave PAP too much of a mandate in GE 2015.
We believe that a combination of High Cost and Economic Downturn will hit Singaporeans very hard if PAP doesn’t change its High Cost policies soon.
Singapore is going to face a very challenging time ahead in 2019. We hope that Singaporeans will stand united and keep PAP in checks in order to get it on to the right path of Democratic and Economic development for Singapore.
Wishing Every Singaporean a Happy New Year 2019
Goh Meng Seng
People’s Power Party