Tuesday, 26 September 2023

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Redditors praises Nicole Seah’s resignation letter as ‘most sincere’ compared to Cheng Li Hui’s 3-paragraph letter

This week has certainly been quite eventful for Singaporeans, as they witnessed the sudden departure of four prominent politicians from the political scene: former Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin, PAP Member of Parliament (MP) Cheng Li Hui, Workers’ Party MP Leon Perera, and WP Youth Wing President Nicole Seah.

Their abrupt withdrawals came after their personal indiscretions were exposed, making it a series of ‘pop-corn shows’ in the city-state.

These politicians have submitted their resignation letters to their respective parties.

Meanwhile, a discussion thread emerged on Reddit, highlighting that a letter penned by Ms Seah, former WP candidate for East Coast GRC in the 2020 General Election, sounded the most sincere.

So what did Ms Seah write to the WP party leader when she submitted her resignation letter on 18 July?

Ms Seah acknowledged that her actions “were selfish and reckless”

Ms Seah, in his resignation letter from WP, acknowledged that her actions “were selfish and reckless,” expresses deep regret for her personal misconduct and acknowledges the disappointment she caused to voters and party members while expressing her remorse for not being a better role model for Singaporean youth.

She admitted to her personal misconduct with another party member, specifically Mr Perera, but also expressed gratitude to the party for the numerous opportunities and responsibilities given to her over the last few years, which she carried out with utmost diligence.

“I am deeply sorry for bringing disrepute to the Party’s standing and the hard work of its members and volunteers.”

“In pursuing impropriety, I have caused grave disappointment to the voters of East Coast GRC, and a significant base of members and volunteers who have sacrificed their personal time and resources to support the extensive groundwork we have done over the last few years.”

She also acknowledged that her public standing meant she should have been a better role model for younger Singaporeans and youth members of the Party.

“I am very sorry that I am unable to carry on the good work of engaging the youth, ” however, she expressed confidence that the WP Youth Wing exco would continue to flourish with enthusiasm and pride in the events and initiatives they will create throughout their term.

In the letter, she apologised to her loved ones for any embarrassment this might have caused, in particular her husband and her mother.

“Throughout this episode, I would like to humbly request that the privacy of my family be respected, as we seek to move ahead.”

Comparison with former PAP MP Ms Cheng’s resignation letter

Some Redditors have compared Ms Seah’s resignation letter to former PAP member Ms Cheng’s, who wrote a three-paragraph resignation letter to her party leader, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

In her letter, Ms Cheng simply informed about her resignation from both roles in the PAP party and as an MP for Tampines GRC. She expressed regret for resigning under these circumstances and apologized to the party, as well as to her residents and volunteers.

Ms Cheng’s letter seems “less eloquent”

A Redditor criticized that when compared to Tan Chuan-Jin, Nicole Seah, and Leon Perera, Ms Cheng’s letter appears less eloquent and seems to be written by someone with limited English proficiency.

“How come such a person could become pap mp is beyond me,” the Redditor questioned.

Some Redditors playfully pointed out that even using ChatGPT could generate ten times more content compared to merely three paragraphs.

A comment questioned why people feel the need to make resignation letters lengthy. The suggestion was to save the niceties for a face-to-face meeting, as the primary purpose of a resignation letter is to give notice and formally record one’s last day of work.

In response, another Redditor agreed with the notion but expressed the opinion that the resignation, in this case, appeared to lack professionalism.

In agreement with the prevailing sentiment, other Redditors also criticized Ms Cheng’s letter for being only a paragraph long.

However, some came to her defence, pointing out that, as a bachelorette, Ms Cheng might have done the least damage to her family compared to the other politicians involved in the recent events.

Some praises brevity as an advantage

Indeed, there are varying perspectives among commenters regarding Ms Cheng’s resignation letter. Some view its brevity as an advantage, appreciating the concise nature without an elaboration of feelings.

“People who know will know, people who don’t won’t.”

On the other hand, some commenters emphasize that a sincere apology should entail taking full responsibility for one’s actions without the need to mention past accomplishments or role modeling.

A Redditor agrees that on the surface, Ms Seah’s resignation letter may seem fine, but upon closer examination, they find it annoying, especially with the mention of achievements and good work, which they feel undermines sincerity.

Sympathy for the husband

While expressing sympathy to Ms Cheng’s husband, a Redditor candidly admitted that he, too, has experienced being cheated on before, understanding the terrible feeling that comes with it. However, having the entire nation aware of such a personal matter takes it to a whole different level.

“He needs to know it’s not his fault, cheaters cheat for any rhyme or reason, if he’s forgiven her then it’s his choice.”

Furthermore, others expressed concerns about the challenges their kids may face as their parents are public figures.

Concerns over the impact of the affairs’ exposure on the Workers’ Party

Some Redditors express concerns about the impact of the affairs’ exposure on the WP, seeing it as a significant blow to their reputation.

One Redditor argues that the affair was particularly damaging for the opposition, making their uphill battle even more challenging and rendering Ms Seah’s sincerity in her resignation letter ineffective.

Another comment predicts that the WP might face challenges in holding onto certain GRCs, with East Coast GRC becoming harder to secure.

The Redditor speculated that the WP Chief Pritam Singh and WP’s Vice-Chairman Faisal Manap might move to Sengkang GRC to fill the minority seat, or WP Veteran Low Thia Khiang might make a comeback to defend Aljunied GRC.

Ms Seah’s political career may come to an end

There are discussions regarding Ms Seah’s future in the political field, with some speculating that she could potentially join another party due to her competence as a politician.

However, another comment expresses doubt, suggesting that no party would likely be willing to consider her given the recent blowout, implying that her political career may come to an end.

From a rising star to an unfortunate end

A Redditor expressed their sadness over Ms Seah’s unfortunate end to her political career, reminiscing about her impressive performance during GE2011 and her return to politics in 2020, which was highly anticipated.

They recalled her rivalry with a PAP member, Ting Pei Ling, and how things turned out differently.

When Ms Seah joined the Workers’ Party, many people believed she had found the right party to showcase her potential, and one Redditor even mentioned that he cheered for her.

Both Mr Perera and Ms Seah were CEC members of Workers’ Party

Ms Seah’s decision to resign from WP was prompted by a video that surfaced on social media on the same day (17 Jul) as the announcement of Tan Chuan Jin and Cheng Li Hui’s affair by PM Lee Hsien Loong.

The video showed shows Perera (53) and Seah (37) in a restaurant, with the former appearing to caress the latter’s hand.

Some sources have suggested that the video was taken two years ago.

Mr Perera and Ms Seah are CEC members of the Workers’ Party, with Perera serving as Chairman of the Media Group and Ms Seah as President of the WP Youth Wing.

Mr Perera represented the Workers’ Party in the East Coast GRC during the 2015 General Election.

Although the Workers’ Party team lost with 39.27% of the votes, he was subsequently appointed as a Non-Constituency MP. In the 2020 General Election, he switched to contest in the Aljunied GRC, where he was successfully elected. He is the president of a consultancy firm and is married with two children.

Ms Seah contested in the Marine Parade GRC under the National Solidarity Party banner in the 2011 General Election.

In 2015, she quietly aided the Workers’ Party as a volunteer, and subsequently represented the Workers’ Party to contest in the East Coast GRC in the 2020 General Election.

She and her husband, who married in 2015, have two daughters. She currently co-founded and is the Chief Operating Officer of a tech company.

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