Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Foreigners at the Gates, Ooops, Inside Already, Too Late!

More Tiongs, Banglas, Ah Neh, Pinoys coming! As long not those white trash ones who beat up a local cabby at the Durian and run road, or those Tiong drivers who strike, they are welcomed, in a way. Small  and medium businesses are happy as there would be a steady pool of foreigners to hire and fire, especially if the blue-collar foreigners are cheaper, experienced, work longer and harder.

You ask any towkay about the need to employ foreigners as cleaners, cooks, labourers, sales staff, service staff, they say that there is a shortfall of local workers coz no locals want to do the job. Service jobs are shunned and scorned by locals. There is no denial. Well, some are denying!

Minimum wage is the answer, some people loftily complain, so that Singaporeans can be hired to do the job instead of hiring a foreigner. Any of those critics actually had the balls and entrepreneur spirit to run a family business? Why pay a bad attitude local $2000 to clean the floor and or run the shop when a foreigner can do the job for half the price? How to run business like that if labour costs so high if employ Singaporeans? The ones who whine are usually employees who bitch that their jobs were taken away by foreigners. No, your job was taken away by someone who could do a job better than you and cheaper, not because the replacement has a different passport, speaks Mandarin with that loud accent or English with that Pinoy drawl.

You know who are the foreigners' only competitors? The Singapore old aunties and uncles doing cleaning and serving crew at McDonalds and SPC petrol pumps etc coz these pre-65 citizens know what hard work is and aren't scared of it. They strike fear in the hungry Pinoy or Tiongs' hearts as these tough old timers, they are of different era.

The resentment towards foreigners is very typical of the local who see obstacles instead of opportunities. The population in Singapore is expected to be 7 million by 2030, a 30% growth! Fucking hell! I'm going to buy as many rental residential properties of all kinds as I can afford to take advantage of this news! Overpriced D'Leedon, here I come this weekend to take milk the easy credit despite CM7! Also a walk-up in Serangoon to convert into a worker dorm .. oops should not have said it aloud! I'm going to get some and rent it out!

January 29, 2013 1:15 pm
Singapore calls for 30% population growth

By Jeremy Grant in Singapore

Singapore’s government has laid out a vision for sustaining the tiny city-state’s economic growth, predicting that it will have to accept a continued influx of foreign workers while it tries to persuade its citizens to have more children.

In a long-awaited white paper published on Tuesday, the government forecast that its population would grow by up to 30 per cent, to 6.9m by 2030.

Of that, up to 36 per cent, or 2.5m, would have to be made up of foreign workers, or what it called “non-residents”, as Singapore tries to balance a shrinking working-age population and low birth rate with the need to have enough workers to maintain economic growth.

Yet that influx comes as Singapore’s ruling party is already grappling with one of its biggest challenges in decades: persuading a population uneasy with a growing number of foreigners and ballooning housing costs, in an country only slightly larger than London, that some level of immigration is needed to sustain the economy.

At the same time as it says it needs more foreign workers, the government has recently curbed the number of foreigners allowed to work in Singapore. Those limits – which have intensified in recent months amid popular unease and a series of hard-fought local elections – have started to hit foreign investors.

Foreign workers currently make up 28 per cent of a total population of 5.3m.

Some foreign companies have reported difficulties obtaining approval for employment passes for non-Singaporeans. The European Chamber of Commerce has just completed a survey of its members on the issue, with results expected within weeks.

The government is also trying to boost worker productivity and to encourage its citizens to have more babies, warning of a “hollowing out” of the island nation’s population if the birth rate does not rise.

Last week, it unveiled a S$2bn ($1.6bn) package of incentives to encourage people to marry and reproduce. That was a 25 per cent increase on an existing package of similar measures.

Such issues have become a challenge for the continued legitimacy of the ruling People’s Action party (PAP), after years in which Singapore’s electorate has generally rewarded the government’s management of the economy at the ballot box.

However, last weekend, the PAP suffered a shock defeat in a by-election. The PAP’s candidate lost heavily to the main opposition Workers’ Party, whose campaign blamed the government’s immigration policy for high housing prices and breakdowns on congested public transport.

The government’s white paper warns that the number of citizens aged 65 and above will triple by 2030 and the number of those of working age, between 20 and 64, would decline from 2020.

“It will become increasingly difficult to grow our workforce through our citizen population alone, unless we succeed in reversing the declining fertility trend,” the paper, produced by the office of prime minister Lee Hsien Loong, said.

A shrinking working-age population would mean “a less vibrant and innovative economy”, while companies might not find enough workers, the paper said.

“Business activity would slow, and job and employment opportunities would shrink,” it added.

Michael Wan, economist at Credit Suisse, said that with the government projecting gross domestic product growth averaging 2-4 per cent over the rest of the decade, Singapore had “set itself an ambitious target” of 2-3 per cent annual productivity growth from 2010 to 2020.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

PAP Out, WP In

The facts speak for itself and Punggol East voted with their hearts! WP won and won big! WP grabbed 54.52% and PAP clutched only 43.71%.

More than 10% difference! More showing of the re-alignment of the political stars in future and WP's ascendency, is comparison with the Aljunied GRC contest, the other big battle that could go either way. In that epic 2011 battle, WP had 54.72% and PAP had 45.28%. From comparing the results yesterday and in 2011, PAP's was less popular than before while WP maintained prestige more or less.

Despite all the criticisms against WP, some fair, some unfair, some serious, some trivial, WP won by about 10% over the incumbent PAP despite a multi-party fight. Yes it was a by-election and chance of WP winning are much higher, coupled with the unpopularity of PAP in housing, inflation, transport and what not, PAP had skid marks and crashed into the wall.

Congratulations to WP, a win is a win and that is all that matters in politics. And it is also a win for Singapore truth be told as after all, it is not any party like SDP, but WP. LOL Will there be AIM-like problems when WP tries to take over the town council, especially when Punggol East town council is under the PAP GRC? Scratch head.

WP's Lee sets out immediate priorities for Punggol East
By Hetty Musfirah | Posted: 27 January 2013 1122 hrs

SINGAPORE: Member of Parliament-elect for Punggol East, Lee Li Lian, said her immediate priorities are the town council and meet-the-people sessions (MPS) in the ward.

The Workers' Party (WP) candidate told reporters after a thank-you parade on Sunday morning that she will be working on the logistics for the MPS.

She said volunteers from the single-member ward of Hougang and the group representation constituency of Aljunied, which are held by WP, will help out during the transition period.

As for the town council, Ms Lee said WP will give details on the handover some time next week.

For now, she will work closely with the relevant parties and ensure a problem-free transition.

Turning to Parliament, Ms Lee said she hopes to highlight issues raised during her by-election campaign.

She also hopes her win will spur more women and younger people to come forward in the political arena.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Will WP Get a Black Eye?

In 2011, WP won Aljunied because they were so close in 2006, Low Thia Khiang was leading from the front in Aljunied GRC, and WP had underdog status in the GE. In Hougang BE, it was WP homeground and HQ, no way PAP could penetrate it and turn it from Blue to White. Punggol East 2013 is different. Much different.

WP's is not really an underdog in this By-E.  Some ways yes, others, no. The underdogs in the internet are PAP (gasp, believe it), RP (yup) and SDA (super yup) in no particular order. PAP, RP and SDA are all so poor thing and pathetic in their own self-pwn ways. Anyway, people like to support the underdog. Especially when the underdog is made fun of. Png Eng Huat, HUAT AH, crossed the imaginary civil line that WP never crossed before by making fun of Dr Arse's name, saying that the Dr would "Koon" or sleep. Not sure if he meant sleep like Palmer sleep around or Ah Teo "sleep" on stage on first day of PAP rally. Orrrrrrr BTW we nobodies can mock Dr Arse. Not a politician on stage, don't stoop so low like the PAP like when they mocked a politician's O level grades.

I don't have problems with WP arrogance or not, accusations hurled from its jealous fellow opposition party critics. WP is leading and they can do what they want strategically in an election as they are their own captains of their political destiny. All these pleas by other parties about unity and whatfuck is just trying to hitchhike on WP's success so far. Spineless freeloaders IMHO.

However, I do have doubts about WP's intellectual clout to see through its policy reforms.WP has been quite convincing on its promise to moderate immigration and having foreigners here as long as they benefit Singapore. The devil is however in the details and WP has not shared what these little nitty gritty criteria are for allowing foreigners in.

Similarly, their policies on housing and transport, I'm not so swayed. Pritam Singh is as usual a powerful orator on stage but his views on housing and the stress on supply is simplistic, assuming it reflects WP high command's thinking. The cooling measures, 7 in total, are not meant to shock the market and bring prices down. Bringing prices down drastically would piss off investors and the construction industry, although buyers would be happy. BTW construction is mostly keeping Singapore from falling into recession. The cooling measures are to slow down the increase in property prices. Killer measures to bring down prices are dead easy but politically costly. Would WP dare to push for a policy that MAS should somehow jack up interest rates to 4-5% to kill off demand for property, and thus push property prices down? And if interest rates go up, how would it affect SME borrowing to survive in this uncertain economy?

I don't doubt WP's heart. I doubt their head. I don't doubt PAP's head. I doubt their heart.

All this said and done. I think WP might lose this BE simply because at the end of the 3rd and final rally, WP did not lead the audience there in reciting the pledge! They broke that special special tradition and therefore will break their winning streak. I pantang. WP should too.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Boring Watchdog WP

WP is not doing that great so far. Yeah sure it is still popular, but put it next to another opposition party like RP, you can see how different it is. WP started the campaign sluggishly with the flimsy mantra that they should be voted in so that PAP can work harder. Yes, yes, yes. With the lost of a GRC, PAP is shaking and worried about their little Risk board of Singapore slowly being carved out into WP blue areas. Let me repeat that mantra - so if we vote WP in, the PAP would work harder.?!

So that means the WP MP does not need to work hard and just sits around slapping the PAP once in a while. In that case, why vote WP in? Why not vote RP's secretary-general, KJ, who actually brought the government to court over the $4 billion loan to the IMF. Did WP bring the PAP government to court over anything? In fact, WP did not file any motions in parliament at all since they fought tooth and claw into it after 2011. Actually, maybe voters who are different from WP and PAP politically, like those who support SDP, should think of supporting RP. Dr CSJ was the one who shouted at then PM Goh over loans to Indonesia remember? It is like deja vu except that KJ is smarter and by the book, and looked better as a result. RP and SDP are closer than we think, just like PAP and WP are closer than we think in terms of their rather conservative ideology.If KJ decides to canvass for the LGBT vote these last few days, then he is after the SDP voters too.

WP is a great party, but they lost the drive for this By-E. They were energised in 2011 but in these few days, did not really follow up in the rallies on transport or housing, recent fuckups by the PAP. Or revisit their manifesto winners like healthcare. WP looked like it either ran out of ideas or steam, or both! Despite saying they would not bring it up until after the government issued a report, WP brought up the AIM issue during its second rally and that was the most creative rally point they had, which should be kept for later. Or more wet markets in Punggol East. What about something bold like WP kindergartens to rival that of PCF?

WP's mantra of voting them in to make PAP work harder is as boring and flat as the PAP's shitty fear-mongering during GE. PAP would threaten - vote us in or else investors would run away, vote us in or else property prices in the area would dive, vote us in or else upgrading would take forever to come.

WP is also coasting along, even claiming credit for everything so far as their reasoning is that if they were not in parliament, PAP would not have done anything to improve our lives. Err OK some merit but... And if we want more improvements, we should vote more WP MPs in. OK well. But not too many since they are not ready to take over the government yet. WTF! First world parliament my ass. Remember their MPs who plagiarised? Remember them telling the other parties that they choped Punggol East?

Still, WP has 2-3 more days to go and they might pick up the ball they dropped. Like I said, they are a great party but so far, they are just sadly stumbling along and if not careful, waste the chance of getting this SMC.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

From Death Threats to Hope Family Action

Kenneth Jeyaretnam blazed away with complaints about a death threat to his son! WTF! You know who the death threater was ???? It is that stupid parody troll, SMRT (Feedback)! Facepalm. KJ is the son of JBJ and he contested in court to stop Singapore's $4 billion loan to the IMF as he interpreted it as unconstitutional. Still, all that comes to nothing with his petty quarrel with a well known retard troll and interpretation of that trolling as a death threat. BTW I hope police arrest that troll! Oh! Desmond Lim the other small-timer candidate in this By-E also said he received intimidating calls! Being threatened to gain sympathy and votes? Come on KJ and Desmond Lim, you guys can come up with better political stunts? At least provoke them and then be threatened with a lawsuit from them!

KJ Threatened his own Campaign Instead!

Unless what KJ is going to next is after making the police report on the so-called death threat, he will raise a copy of the police report during his rally speech and repeat his father's infamous line "And now I have here in my hands a police report"! If he does that...

While KJ shot himself with a badly executed election stunt to gain sympathy votes, PAP shot first with a lukewarm rally on Friday night. The crowd at the rally was not huge, maybe a few hundred people, and thinned even more when it began to drizzle.

The most impressive thing about the first PAP salvo was that they catered to the hearing-impaired audience, OK the deaf, can I say the word "deaf" instead of these meaningless empty political correct words? OK the other impressive thing was that Dr Arse Koh like DPM Ah Teo before him, delivered speeches in Malay. Right away the Malay votes goes to them for effort. And fuck, I know my Malay accent when I hear it, Ah Teo's Malay was better sounding than Nicole's Malay speech back in GE 2011.

Besides the form of sign language interpretation and Malay language speeches, let's give it to PAP, Dr Arse speech was so-so and kinda lame in content IMHO although his delivery was not bad. He talked that he was a Punggol boy, yawn, and that he was going to build childcare centres, coffee shops, look into feeder bus services, start a job placement centre, and Rivervale Plaza would be up by July. Plus his slogan of Hope Family and Action. All are important BTW but zzzzzzzz Errr OK, so what the fuck did Palmer do after he won in GE 2011? So what makes Punggol residents think this Dr who just popped into the scene would make a difference if another old bird PAP MP with his supposed PAP insider connections did not meet the needs of Punggol residents? Punggol residents would try someone new right?

WP you are up next. Don't disappoint and be complacent as you allowed the PAP to start first. The PAP candidate fired the first shot with local municipal concerns. Are you going to match it plan for plan, or try to regain the lost initiative and surprise Punngol and the rest of us with a with a different and bold theme. Go for WP kindergartens and clinics?

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Local or National Issues?

Punggol East By-Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! What issue would Punggol East voters want? What is the demographics there?

Act One is over and the players have made their appearance already. SDP was supposed to get up do their soliloquy but had second thoughts - obviously stage fright or did not prepare despite the claims of RDA pedigree whatever.  Act Two starts from now where the 4 candidates and their party make their rally and off-rally speeches. Act Three would be the contention over imagined and real concerns of not only Punggol East residents, but Singapore as a whole!

Rivervale Plaza works? Transport network? Childcare centres in the neighbourhood? Or inflation? Or COV and the runaway property market? Or low quality of public and high cost of private transport concerns? Healthcare? Education? Foreigners as boon or bane to local SMEs and the economy? Let it roll! Who is going to punch first and set the pace of the fight?

Any Secret Squirrel this time? LOL If yes, disgruntled whistle-blowers, please make the yarn real juicy to make this By-E exciting.

SDP is Kaput as a Political Party!

Like I said before, SDP would withdraw. The next thing is going to happen if WP loses Punggol East, choy choy I'm not cursing WP BTW, is that SDP Chee Soon Juan will come out, shake his head and point fingers that it was all WP's fault not to cooperate otherwise SDP's MP would have won that SMC! Seriously?

Chee is mad - mad to think that his plan of conning WP into an lopsided alliance with him would work, mad to think that his and SDP's credibility would not be gutted by his limp dick pull-out. Participating in the By-E stubbornly would have won stud accolades from die-hard SDP fanboys. Pulling out after all the bravado, even those same SDP fanboys would be disappointed and frustrated by the about-turn flaccid retreat.  Isn't democracy about giving people choices and isn't that what SDP hyped about?

SDP would surely lose some of its groupies. Even resignations from SDP is expected after this comedy. By lamely going back on its word, it is worse than entering that multi-corner MMA ring. Well done SDP for screwing yourself in the arse, even arse specialist Dr Koh Poh Poon can't save you.

Pullout won't hurt credibility: Chee
Updated 11:51 PM Jan 15, 2013
by Neo Chai Chin

Was the Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) genuine in its intention to contest the Punggol East by-election?

If its reason for pulling out of the race was to not dilute the Opposition vote, why not step aside last Saturday after the Workers' Party (WP) rebuffed its overtures to field a joint candidate?

Would the pullout from the race hurt the SDP's credibility?

Fielding these questions from the media yesterday, SDP Secretary-General Chee Soon Juan said the party had been serious about contesting in Punggol East, having done walkabouts and distributed flyers in the ward in the past week.

It even had printed posters - delivered yesterday evening - of its two potential candidates, Dr Vincent Wijeysingha and Dr Paul Ananth Tambyah.

"It was not just a matter of… turning a switch off and on, it was a process we had to go through. We had to weigh out all the pros and cons, and the fact that we had put in already so much work in the constituency," said Dr Chee.

He does not think the shock move will hurt the SDP in future. "If anything, it would signal that we are concerned about the people's voices, the people's views," he said.

Asked to clarify his comments made on Monday that he "knew all along" its unity candidate proposal to the WP would be rebuffed, Dr Chee said he was referring to the period from last Saturday, when the WP had said it had "noted" the SDP's proposal and would offer a choice to voters in Punggol East.

"We could not have known all along, before WP responded, how they would respond. I was referring to Saturday morning after WP made the statement. After that, we had three long days to deliberate on what we were going to do," Dr Chee said.

On the party's plans going forward, Dr Chee said it would continue coming up with policy proposals and explain them to Singaporeans. It will also do ground work and identify potential candidates for the next General Election, due by 2016.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

SDP Shows its Stupid Cards in the By-E Poker

Unfuckingbelievable. SDP was both cock and crazy enough to suggest this absurd joint proposal to WP as a spirit of cooperation of win-win in the approaching By-E. Yeah, right. SDP would offer its candidate instead, suggesting that its man is more capable as a political icon than anyone WP can propose.If the coalition wins the By-E, WP can run the town council, suggesting that WP can do the heavy lifting afterwards while SDP dumps Punggol East voters after the initial courtship and fling. Are SDP and Chee Soon Juan snakes or not you think? Hisssssssss

SDP thinks its proposal is reasonable and clever. SDP is deluded that it is in the spirit of gentlemanly cooperation. SDP has been whining that it sent letters to WP to open up cooperation. Really, with these sort of proposals and conditions, what do you think WP would do - of course reject it as any political party with dignity would do. SDP then thinking itself smart would later say that WP rejected a perfectly honest and friendly proposal that was beneficial to Singaporeans. Oh SDP and Chee Soon Juan, what big fucking bullshit you have!

This is all a SDP farce and when nomination day comes and no SDP candidate steps forward, you bet that shameless SDP would give the excuse that for the benefit of Singaporeans and with a heavy heart, they decided to generously bow out and let WP take on PAP. WTF. And if, if, if, WP loses Punggol East, SDP would then sadly say that WP should have listened and allowed SDP to use their man. Facepalm.

Hopeless SDP should just shut the fuck up and  take part in the By-E. They are always yelping about democracy this, diversity that, freedom of choice for citizens this and level political playing field that. So why don't they man up, and let the people choose on the 26th. If they are so confident of their popularity and prowess, they would be cock-sure about their victory in this By-E, and there is no need for this song and dance courtship of WP.

SDP proposes joint campaign with Workers' Party

SINGAPORE - The Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) has proposed that it run a joint campaign with the Workers' Party (WP) in the Punggol East by-election.

"In the spirit of compromise and cooperation, we would like to propose that our two parties run a joint campaign and field one candidate from the SDP. If victorious, the SDP candidate will enter Parliament and the WP will run the Punggol East Town Council," said SDP Secretary-General Chee Soon Juan.

He termed it a "win-win-win situation" where there would be another seat for the Opposition in Parliament and it would lay the ground for "bigger Opposition representation" in the next General Election.

Dr Chee noted that the WP would have "added clout" in their Town Council management and the SDP would have the opportunity to "table and debate the Government on our alternative policies".

The SDP has emailed the WP on the proposal and sought a meeting with them tomorrow, he said, adding that this was the "answer" to preventing a three-corner fight.

"I assure you, we are very serious about contesting in this by-election. Our campaigning started way before the by-election was called," he added.

Separately, the Singapore People's Party, citing erroneous media reports, has issued a statement to reiterate that it will not be contesting in the Punggol East by-election.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

By-E is Here! Woohoo!

So soon! I thought it would be after Budget when all the angpows are handed out, during the March school holidays and the AIM saga buried. The PAP is instead stormed head-on into this election. Good for them, good for Punggol East SMC voters!

I watched news earlier and Jufrie from CMI SDP said that it was too soon and they were not fully prepared yet. Sounds like clearing their throats and giving excuses that they would back out from this By-E! Well, at least his boss Chee Soon Juan said they were ready for the fight. Desmond Lim the fat dick from also-CMI SDA who did not even get his deposit back in 2011 is confident though that he is surely getting into the brawl. Good for him! Hope he doesn't mind losing his deposit again, and should see it like the $100 fee for locals to enter the casinos and try their luck with the dice.

Is Reform Party walking the talk and also getting into the game? Kenneth seemed less confident than earlier and might also u-turn on his earlier bravado about the high stakes game with PAP and WP.

Is there a point for the opposition parties to talk before nomination day about so-called splitting of anti-PAP votes and thus giving way to WP to stand alone against PAP? WTF IMHO pointless as parties like SDP and RP already committed to the adventure and to back off now is 100% no-balls. May the best party win and this is the start of an experiment in democracy in elections. 

With AIM still stinking, with high COE, high COV, high inflation, high resentment, plus a by-election tactic mindset that Punggol East SMC residents should take advantage of unless they are ignorant voters, the chances of PAP performing better than 2011 are pathetic. Whether WP would win I think is a done deal - they would win, just a matter of how much. Nonetheless, SDP might be the wild card during the rallies if they eventually follow through with their rhetoric about giving Punngol East voters a choice and Vincent submits his papers for nomination. If the PAP decides to stupidly bully SDP with more law suits, public sympathy might swing from both PAP and WP to SDP. Who knows how the plebs think and react?

WP ready to contest by-election: Low Thia Khiang
SINGAPORE - The Workers' party Secretary General Low Thia Khiang says the party is ready to contest the by-election in Punggol East SMC.

Speaking to the media before the start of his Meet-the-People Session this evening, he said the party will announce the candidate in due course but the logistics are ready for the by-election.

When asked about the timing of the by election, Mr Low said that it is good that the prime minister has decided to call a by election as soon as possible.

He said it is fair so that residents of Punggol East SMC can have a representative.

Asked about his party's confidence in contesting the ward, Mr Low said he does not want to speculate on the results but that the party has contested there before and is thankful for the support from voters.

He said the voters have seen what the party can offer and it will be up to them to decide.

He did acknowledge, however, that the PAP has an advantage as the incumbent.

He said so far, there are no plans to have a joint meeting with other opposition parties who have voiced interest to contest. CHANNEL NEWSASIA

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

WP's HQ Donation Drive

I only know of 2 parties which have big party offices - PAP and PKMS. How they got their windfall to buy property only heaven knows.

WP is now confidently considering expansion. They did not say where their future HQ would be, but knowing WP, it would be prudent for image and for economy, maybe somewhere in Hougang. I doubt they would get a Dhoby Ghaut office space like that megalomaniac Tan Jee Say. So if you want see WP thrive, please donate to the guys in blue, don't be shy!

The thing is whether it is a good time to buy commercial property at this time when property market is very bullish, instead of when there is a correction.

SINGAPORE - The Workers' Party (WP) is hoping to raise S$1 million through public donations to buy its own headquarters because it finds its current rented office along Syed Alwi Road too small.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of Bricks in Blue, a musical concert it staged yesterday, party Chairman Sylvia Lim said: "The rentals that we're (paying) ... are always subject to market forces and will increase over time - as you know, the property market is very buoyant when it comes to rental - so that is also part of our consideration."

Owning an asset will also mean the WP may sublet part of it to "make ourselves more self-sufficient", the Member of Parliament for Aljunied Group Representation Constituency added.

Ms Lim said that about one-third of the S$1.5 million the party expects will be needed for the downpayment of the property has been raised since the general election last year, through monthly S$1,000 contributions from the party's elected Members of Parliament and private donations from friends and acquaintances. The balance of the purchase price will be financed through a loan, Ms Lim said.

While the party has yet to find a suitable property, Ms Lim said that they are hoping to secure a two-storey shophouse unit. SHARON SEE

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Is Alex Au Sue-Proof?

 Alex dodges another one.

Lao gay Alex Au got another warning letter about his recent blog post on AIM which insinuated that some PAP members, including the PM himself, were corrupt. The warning was delivered by famous PAP attack legal pit bull, Davinder Singh. Alex Au, as usual to save his own skin which is the natural thing to do for any of us, apologised reluctantly and took down his blog post. Nevertheless, Chee Soon Juan or the late JBJ would not have backed down though and relished the chance of being political martyrs. Alex has more sense, just like Vincent Wijeysingha who apologised to Tan Chuan-Jin for some other defamatory comments.

This is not the first time lao Au got into trouble. Actually the 3rd time since last year - 1st was his blog post that had fleeting mention of Shanmugam's affair, the 2nd was his comments that the courts protected plastic-looking Woffles Wu. I would think this would be the last chance for Alex Au before the insecure powers that be castrate him as Alex seems bent on doing what he does best. 

Really, Alex Au whether you like his postings or not, his SDP politics or not, is an insightful blogger to agree or disagree with. But to cow him into silence and make him apologise, this style cannot work anymore and is going to boomerang hard on the PAP, especially when there is a SMC By-E coming close. Alex is not The Real Singapore or that type of blogger which deserve to be slapped back by the PAP for stupid rumour-mongering or just simply, stupidity.

Making Alex gulp and swallow his own words does not make him wrong in the first place in today's thinking. Maybe our parents' and grandparents' generation might think that sort of truism. The new truism is that we just think that Alex was bullied into shutting up instead and that maybe he was on the right track hence the need for him to be warned legally for crossing the line. Nonetheless, for the PAP, it is damned if they do or don't as if they sit on their fat butts and not threaten to sue, it also means to the PAP critic that their silence meant their guilt. Anyway, IMHO the threat to sue, is worse than the remaining silent and nonchalant in an age where we are easily intolerant of any high-handedness by the ruling party. Good job PAP on screwing youself again, and hope you lose in the By-E! Bye bye!

Blogger Au to remove post after PM Lee takes legal action
Website founder served letter of demand, will post apology for parts of blog post on PAP town council deals that defamed PM
04:45 AM Jan 05, 2013
by Ng Jing Yng

SINGAPORE - Exactly two weeks after he wrote a blog post on the sale of computer systems used by town councils, the founder of the popular Yawning Bread website, Mr Alex Au, has been served with a legal warning by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to take it down or face legal action.

Senior Counsel Davinder Singh of the law firm Drew & Napier, acting on behalf of PM Lee, sent the letter of demand to Mr Au yesterday. It is the third time in the past 11 months that Mr Au has been taken to task over his blog posts.

In the letter, Mr Singh said the article, headlined "PAP mis-AIMed, faces blowback", taken together with 21 other comments posted by readers, can be taken to suggest that Mr Lee is guilty of corruption in relation to the transaction between the PAP town councils and the company Action Information Management (AIM).

It added that the post could be intended to mean that the Prime Minister would "abuse his powers to cover up the matter or prevent any investigation into (Mr Lee's) corruption".

"These are false and baseless allegations," Mr Singh charged, and demanded that the article be taken down immediately. He further demanded that Mr Au publish an apology and an undertaking not to make further allegations of a similar nature on his website.

Mr Singh noted that PM Lee has suffered damage to his reputation and incurred costs as a result of the article. However, he said Mr Lee would not claim damages and costs if Mr Au apologised and removed the post, in keeping with his stand on a similar incident on Feb 19 last year involving the Temasek Review Emeritus (TRE) website. In that episode, TRE removed and apologised for an article which had, among other things, questioned Madam Ho Ching's position in Temasek Holdings, after being served with a similar letter of demand.

Contacted yesterday, Mr Au acknowledged the defamatory nature of the blog post and comments, and said he would remove them.

However, he added: "This should not distract from the issue of the sale of town council software to Action Information Management."

"From what has been disclosed so far, reasonable people would have many questions, and while news of me getting a lawyer's letter might be temporarily more 'newsy', it is more important for Singapore that these questions be answered, not avoided."

The article in question, written on Dec 21, relates to the ongoing exchange of words between the Coordinating Chairman of the PAP town councils, Mr Teo Ho Pin, and Aljunied-Hougang Town Council (AHTC) Chairman Sylvia Lim over computer systems used to manage PAP town councils. It began when a Town Council Management Report released on Dec 14 flagged AHTC's less-than-stellar performance in management of Service & Conservancy Charge arrears, and that it did not complete its submission for the new Corporate Governance indicator.

Explaining the poor performance, Ms Lim said AIM had terminated its contract with AHTC to provide IT services in August 2011. As a result, she said, the town council had to develop its own system.

In subsequent exchanges, Ms Lim questioned why the rights to the software were sold to AIM, which is owned by the PAP, and if this was in the public interest. Mr Teo followed with a detailed explanation of the sale, and said the deal was done to benefit all 14 town councils.

Mr Au has been served with legal warnings in the past over his blog posts. In February last year, Law Minister K Shanmugam sent him a lawyer's letter demanding that he remove a post containing allegedly defamatory comments about the minister's personal conduct. Mr Au complied and removed the article.

Five months later, in July, he wrote a post alleging that plastic surgeon Woffles Wu had received special treatment over a speeding offence. The post was deemed to be in contempt of court, and Mr Au subsequently apologised.
Taking blogs and websites to task

The lawyer's letter served yesterday by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on blogger Alex Au is the fourth instance in less than a year where political leaders here have taken blogs or websites to task for putting up allegedly defamatory statements.

February, 2012: On Feb 14, Law Minister K Shanmugam's lawyers issued a letter to blogger Alex Au, asking him to remove a Feb 8 post containing allegedly defamatory personal allegations about the minister. Mr Au complied.

Five days later, Temasek Review Emeritus Editor Richard Wan was served a lawyer's by PM Lee. Mr Lee's lawyers wanted Mr Wan to retract a Feb 16 post containing allegedly defamatory remarks and to publish an apology on the website. The post had, among other things, questioned Madam Ho Ching's position in Temasek Holdings. The website removed the post and apologised.

November, 2012: The Real Singapore website was asked to apologise twice over a defamatory post concerning Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen. The website had reposted a letter published on Temasek Review Emeritus - which asked for the National Service disruption list that Dr Ng had said would be made public - and added a defamatory headline. Dr Ng's lawyers rejected the first apology which was "not sincere or unqualified".