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PM Lee’s Leadership Transition: A Delayed Promise?
Despite Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's past pledges to foster a new generation of leaders since his swearing-in-ceremony in 2004, uncertainty looms over the power transition to Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong. Questions about PM Lee's willingness to cede power are fueled by his reduced parliamentary activity and a seeming emphasis on maintaining the status quo. As Singapore grapples with challenges like escalating living costs, a defined leadership transition timeline could provide much-needed stability.
Hong Kong court quashes investigative journalist’s conviction
Hong Kong's top court has overturned the conviction of journalist Bao Choy, granting a rare victory for press freedom in the city. Choy was found guilty in 2021 for accessing car ownership records during her investigation into an attack on democracy supporters. The Court of Final Appeal ruled unanimously that "bona fide journalism" should not be excluded from the definition of accessing the records for "other traffic and transport related matters." The decision highlights the importance of freedom of speech and the press in Hong Kong.
UBS says to complete Credit Suisse takeover on 12 June
Swiss banking giant UBS is set to finalize its acquisition of troubled domestic rival Credit Suisse by 12 June, according to both banks. The completion date is slightly later than previously anticipated. UBS agreed to purchase Credit Suisse for three billion Swiss francs (US$3.25 billion) under government pressure to prevent its collapse. Upon completion, Credit Suisse shares and American Depositary Shares will be delisted, creating a superbank overseeing US$5 trillion of invested assets, according to UBS CEO Sergio Ermotti.
US, China join naval drills in Indonesia despite rifts
The United States and China have both deployed warships to participate in multinational naval drills in Indonesia, despite their ongoing tensions. The exercises aim to foster cooperation among like-minded nations and address common challenges such as humanitarian and disaster response. The presence of warships from the US and China highlights their fierce competition in various domains, including diplomacy, military, technology, and economy. The drills come amid escalating disagreements between the two powers over issues such as Taiwan and Pacific island nations. Efforts to renew dialogue and avoid misunderstandings leading to conflict have been emphasized by US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
Damanhuri Bin Abas departs from Muhammadiyah Islamic College amid speculations of political influences
Former Singapore Democratic Party candidate, Damanhuri Bin Abas, abruptly exited his Director position at Muhammadiyah Islamic College (MIC) two months post his rejoining, following retirement from active politics. In his Facebook posts, Damanhur lauds his colleagues, maintaining political roles alongside professional positions, without conflict. His own recent MIC departure, amid speculations of political interference, ironically raises questions about the practice of political neutrality in Singapore's professional landscape.
Red Dot United calls for greater transparency and accountability over ministers’ residency controversy
Red Dot United (RDU) has called for transparency over the controversy surrounding the rental and residency of two People's Action Party ministers in Ridout Road. It expressed concerns over the lack of accountability, potential conflicts of interest, and the disparity between the ministers' lifestyles and everyday Singaporeans amidst challenging economic times.
Fossil fuelled: Climate talks begin with spotlight on oil chief
The upcoming UN climate negotiations will scrutinize the future of fossil fuels, with an Emirati oil chief, Sultan al-Jaber, at the forefront. As pressure mounts for ambitious plans to combat climate change, al-Jaber's appointment as head of COP28 has faced criticism from campaigners urging him to step aside. While al-Jaber advocates for renewable energy development, he also emphasizes carbon capture technologies and the role of fossil fuels in the energy transition. The discussions aim to address the urgency of transitioning away from fossil fuels while assessing progress in reducing carbon emissions.