People’s Action Party (PAP) candidate, Ivan Lim has announced that he will be dropping out from the upcoming General Election as a candidate and the party has accepted the resignation.
According to the media, Lim had written a letter to the party, where he pointed that he maintains a clear conscience but had decided to withdraw from the election so as not to disrupt PAP’s election campaign.
The party expressed regret over his decision but respect the reasons behind his withdrawal.
Lim who was introduced as a PAP candidate on Wednesday (24 June), has been critized over the past few days online over his character and moral ethics by his colleagues at Keppel Offshore and Marine (KOM), fellow army comrades. Not just that but also various allegations and criticisms from polytechnic school mates and neighbours.
Most of the criticisms centred on his “arrogant, selfish and elitist” attitude as a commanding officer (CO) in military service, and uncompassionate ill-treatment of colleagues and subordinates as assistant general manager (AGM) and general manager (GM) at the shipyard organisation.
A petition on Change.org calling for the removal of Ivan Lim from GE was also created on Friday (26 June). It asked the public to sign if “they do not want him to be a member of parliament, regardless of whether he is in PAP or an (alternative) party.” So far, it has garnered over 20,000 signatures at the time of writing.
First Assistant Secretary-General Heng Swee Keat has urged Lim on Saturday (27 June) at a walkabout at Teban Market and Food Centre to “clarify these complaints and comments.”
“I have emphasised that integrity and character are very important in our candidates, and whether that individual has the heart to serve all Singaporeans. We expect our candidates to be able to stand up and address any concerns that were raised about them,” added Mr Heng.
Just a few hours ago before Lim’s resignation as PAP’s running candidate, PAP’s office issued a press statement on behalf of Lim where he addressed the criticisms.
He began by saying he was doing this because “his family is affected, especially his mother.” He then dived straight into the allegations of the Brazilian bribery incident insisting it was “completely baseless and untrue” and that he “was not involved in any of the Brazilian projects.”
As to his actions in the military as CO, Lim said that “people can have different perspectives of the same incident,” and that it was due to “high standards he set for his unit as CO” and things “that he was prepared to do himself.”
In response to incidents at KOM, he again stated that “high standards were required in the shipyard industry” and that “many colleagues have been promoted and done well during (his) tenure as AGM and GM.”
Lim ended by saying “the test (of) politics has come sooner than (he) has expected” but wishes to convey that he is “determined to stay the course.”
Netizen answers call by Heng Swee Keat to clarify comments on PAP candidate Ivan Lim
One of the netizens who come forward with negative stories of Lim, has offered to have a conversation about his statement of encounter with Mr Lim.
In a Facebook post on Saturday (27 June), the netizen, Mr Bryant Wong, addressed First Assistant Secretary-General of PAP Heng Swee Keat directly, saying, “Mr Heng – Feel free to reach out anytime. I am willing to standby my statement of encounter with Mr Ivan Lim which I’ve put up.”
“I would ask for our conversation to be put on record and made available to fellow Singaporeans given we both recognize the importance to verify the character of candidates,” he added.
The original post alleged that Ivan Lim was “condescending” and an “elitist”
About two days prior, Mr Wong had shared a story on his Facebook page detailing an encounter he had with Mr Lim when they were both in the NS Combat Engineering Battalion. Mr Lim was Mr Wong’s commanding officer then, said the post.
In his story, Mr Wong alleged that during an outfield exercise in Khatib Bongsu back in 2013, Mr Lim spoke “using a condescending voice” to tell others not to step into the air-conditioned tent he was using.
“His action and speech were simply that of an elitist,” wrote Mr Wong.
He went on to say, “There were other instances during Battalion briefings where he would always [pepper] the briefings with his personal achievement (how he is a GM at shipyard, how many people reporting to him at work, etc).”
“He [Mr Lim] was never well liked by the soldiers and commanders of the Battalion due to his constant “humble brag” and driving around camp in his expensive cars.”
Mr Wong concluded his post asking, “So now he is going into politics to represent the ordinary folks in Parliament. With his character and personality – will he?”