The People’s Voice Party (PVP) had previously demanded measures to reduce the impact of COVID-19 outbreak on the society which the government is ‘only now getting around to contemplating’, the PVP’s founding chief Lim Tean wrote on Facebook on Wednesday (11 March).
Mr Lim said the party voices out its opinion on how the country can do more to lessen the impact of the virus outbreak on its platform everyday, adding that the People’s Action Party (PAP)’s early measures were not adequate enough to contain the virus.
“Our demand for schools to close has shown how ill-prepared and backward our MOE are in delivering our curriculum online. We are not tech-smart in our education and this is damning,” he noted.
On 23 February, the party demanded that passengers arriving from South Korea should be denied entry into Singapore due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in South Korea. However, the government only started to impose the ban 10 days later.
Mr Lim further explained that the party has listed out the kind of budget that is required to tackle the economic fallout resulted from the outbreak and advised for a budget that can stimulate spending, such as an immediate 2% reduction on GST, an emergency loan fund for the small businesses, rental pauses, taxi rental fees cut, and more.
Now that the government is considering a “second package”, Mr Lim hopes that it will include the measures that the party has called for.
“From the very first few days we called for travel restrictions from mainland China, social distancing, mask distribution, cancel of Chingay, work-from home measures where possible, a national hotline to stop people going to their clinics and hospitals and many more,” he remarked.
Nevertheless, Mr Lim hinted that most of the demanded measures were never done by the government and the implementation of travel restrictions in the country was too late.
He said the party will continue to carry the duty of an opposition party in the country and will not be afraid to call out those who are responsible to manage the crisis.
“We are not yet in Parliament, but when we are, our voices will remain just as strong, just as pro-active and with more impact because the PAP will not be able to pretend to ignore us, their MSM will have to report our position and the PAP will have to learn to think on their feet in order to respond to the Peoples Voice questions directed at them,” Mr Lim noted.
PVP also encouraged the people to share, like, and comment on posts, as well as to use the information to demand more from the Member of Parliaments (MPs), Ministry of Health (MOH), Ministry of Education (MOE), and other departments.
“I was heartened that it was NETIZENS that forced the stop of the LKY coins last week. It showed 2 very important points. Firstly that the PAP is neck-deep in Yes men and Yes women, so many tax-paid people who do not have the courage or the presence of mind to speak out and say when something is wrong (LKY was explicit he didn’t want such idolatry about him),” he said. “Secondly and more importantly it took the actions and collective voice of netizens to force change – and they won!”