by Teo Soh Lung
After watching the press conference of Minister Lawrence Wong on Sunday (15 March) and Minister Vivian Balakrishnan’s interview with CNBC on 11 March, I was angry — not at the two ministers but at our prime minister.
On 14 March 2020, a day after the Electoral Boundaries Report was published, he wrote on his Facebook:
“… We have two choices. Either hope and pray that things will stabilise before the end of the term so that we can hold elections under more normal circumstances – but we have no certainty of that.
Or else call elections early, knowing that we are going into a hurricane, to elect a new government with a fresh mandate and a full term ahead of it, which can work with Singaporeans on the critical tasks at hand…”
Why is the Prime Minister hinting about an election now?
Both Lawrence Wong and Vivian Balakrishnan had been working their guts out to stop the spread of COVID-19.
They have to think of the safety of Singaporeans abroad who must be brought home from countries severely affected by the virus. They worry about our economy and are thinking of ways to reduce its impact on businesses and livelihood. They are thinking of our health care system, whether it is able to cope with the increase number of cases and deal with the issue of whether to close schools and institutions. They are instituting border controls.
You can see the worries on their tired and anxious faces. When asked by their interviewer/reporters about the prime minister’s threat to call an early general election, both had simply dismissed the question. Lawrence Wong said that they have no time to think of election as “election is not the most important thing right now.” They are treating COVID-19 as a “global phenomenon” and are determined to contain it.
So why is the Prime Minister penning irreverent thoughts on his Facebook? Is he going to be as famous as Trump with his incessant, irresponsible tweets? He was dismissive of the impact of COVID-19 in the initial days. He appears to be just as dismissive today.
Come on Mr Prime Minister. Don’t be an imbecile. Get on with real work and help your ministers to contain the pandemic. Ensure the safety of Singaporeans. You are paid millions to work and not to pen irresponsible thoughts on facebook.
If you are holding an election in these precarious times when every person is doing his/her best to stop the spread of the disease and when Malaysian PM Muhyddin Yassin had declared a national lockdown on 18 March, let me tell you that you are not fit to be the prime minister. You should hand over your reign to your Ministers, Heng Swee Keat, Lawrence Wong or Vivian Balakrishnan.