SDP’s Chee Soon Juan launches new book, Never on Bended Knees

Chee Soon Juan, the Secretary-general of the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) just launched his new book entitled Never on Bended Knees. The book features a collection of Mr Chee’s thoughts and observations in Singapore spanning the last two decades.

In her introduction of the book at the launch on 26 Jan held at SDP’s headquarters, assistant treasurer of SDP Dr Wong Souk Yee said the book “adds crucially to the growing narrative of SG which varies from the official perspective perpetuated by mainstream media.”

She says it shows a side of Singapore that has been camouflaged by the nations ‘glittering economy, sophisticated urban skyline, and tightly crafted state narrative’.

The book examines the factors which made Singapore so economically successful for the last five decades following the nation’s independence, and highlights the longer-term implications of such factors which do not augur well for the future of the nation.

During the launch, Dr Chee Soon Juan took to the stage to introduce his book and described the inspiration behind it. He noted that change is coming to Singapore whether we like it or not and change is essential.

In his speech, Dr Chee spoke about several ‘critical’ areas in Singapore which he feels are in most need of change. These are economy, education, and the political system. Dr Chee elaborate that it seems every few years, ‘an important sounding’ committee or report is released by the administration but it was always simply a rehash of old ideas and solutions.

He also touched on the system of meritocracy that reigns in Singapore, noting that his book demonstrates just how unfair such a system can be. He warned that the people of Singapore had better do something or risk facing a decline as a society.

Before taking some questions from the audience, Dr Chee voiced his hope that his book would stimulate discussions and debates, and encourage citizens around the island to debate more critically.

Dr Chee’s book Never on Bended Knees is available for purchase online at

Watch the full video of the book launch and Dr Chee’s speech here: