People’s Voice (PV) chief and founder Lim Tean announced on Wednesday (24 June) that he would be broadcasting a Facebook live session every day at 5pm to address the current affairs in Singapore and what his party’s plans are.
During his first broadcast yesterday evening, Mr Lim started off by commenting that the coming General Election (GE) is “perhaps the most crucial one” since Singapore’s independence.
He disagreed that the 4G leaders in Singapore would be able to “take the country forward”, and he believed that Singapore has the “most incompetent” government in the nation’s history.
By pointing out the COVID-19 crisis response in Singapore, Mr Lim criticised how the Government was indecisive and did not consider taking the measures “People’s Voice suggested”.
“Not only the did the economy tanked from February, but instead of locking everything down and taking the measures that People’s Voice suggested, such as social distancing right from the outset, extreme social distancing, work from home closure of schools and so forth.”
He further noted that the Government tried to keep the economy open and told the people that “life must go on”. This resulted in a prolonged lockdown. The PV chief stated that the Government’s decisions were a “shameful u-turn”, adding that the people were “financially crippled” even more.
Mr Lim also expressed that it was shocking to hear Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong say that the nation’s conditions have “stabilised” during his televised broadcast on Tuesday (23 June) as he announced the dissolution of the Parliament. The lawyer believed that the nation has not stabilised because of the triple-digit number of cases reported every day.
“No, they have not. We still have triple-digit cases every day, and we do not even know the true extent of the infection in the community because whatever they say.”
On behalf of PV, he noted that there has not been widespread testing for COVID-19, adding that if there was widespread testing, the number of confirmed cases would be “even more shocking”.
“People’s Voice is of the view that there has not been widespread testing and if there’s widespread testing the numbers will be even more shocking. And yet, he wants to rush us into this election – totally disregarding the health and the safety of the citizens.”
Singapore’s economy amid COVID-19 pandemic
The PV chief claimed that the “incompetence and ineptness” of the COVID-19 taskforce has caused the country to bear the “financial brunt”.
Despite believing that holding the GE now is not a safe move for the community, he stressed that the election is “vital” for many reasons.
Mr Lim went on to question the point of globalisation as only the top 1 to 5 per cent of the population “have done very well”, leaving the middle- and lower-income group to struggle financially.
“Wages for the middle income have stagnated, our lower-income have done even worse. Then you have the Sandwich Generation. People in their 30s and 40s having to look after their own families as well as their parents.”
He also slammed the way Singapore mistreated the senior citizens by pointing out that cardboard collectors scrape a few dollars every day to survive. He expressed that the senior citizens’ situation pained him, though at the same time, it helped him reflect on the country’s CPF system.
Condemning that the system has been the “greatest scam story” in Singapore, Mr Lim thought it is “impossible” to survive on that sum of money into old age. He pointed out that due to the low CPF return, the senior citizens are forced to “work until they die”, thus questioning if this is the standard of a first-world country.
He added that the PV stands for returning the CPF to Singaporeans at 55 years old, which was the “original promise” given to the citizens. He further criticised the Government for breaking this promise by giving out the last CPF payment at 90 years old.
Hence, Mr Lim demands “far better returns” on CPF for Singaporeans, adding that he wants the CPF to be invested by a proper body comprising of “professional investors”. He believes that this would “give dignity” to Singaporeans.
Job opportunities in Singapore
Other than that, Mr Lim brought up the issue of local graduates not being able to land stable jobs and having to resort to freelancing.
According to him, PV does not stand for depriving local citizens of “good-paying jobs” as well as allowing the foreign labour force to take up jobs that could be given to Singaporeans.
“But we certainly have about 400,000 of PMETs and S pass holders who are foreign workers. Why are those jobs not going to Singaporeans? In no other country in the world will you find citizens being deprived of good-paying jobs, and foreigners being allowed to work in those good-paying jobs.”
Mr Lim pledged to put the best interests of Singaporeans first, adding that his party will be able to “make Singapore our real home again”.