Tag Archive | "Foo Mee Har"

PAP MP accidentally reveals she is part of WP camp

PAP MP accidentally reveals she is part of WP camp

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Oops.

Meanwhile in parliament today…

Someone was sticking out like a sore thumb.

foo-mee-har-vote

Small but loud crowd roots for Cedric Foo at Pioneer SMC

Small but loud crowd roots for Cedric Foo at Pioneer SMC

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Speakers emphasise the PAP’s constant presence in the constituency, questions Opposition’s commitment.

By Grace Chew

Photo: STRAITS TIMES

SUPPORTERS shared the limelight from the Ministers of Parliament yesterday night at the Pioneer Single Member Constituency rally by the People’s Action Party (PAP).

Cries of “PAP huat ah!”, “PAP Cedric Foo”, “Cedric Foo we love you!” and many other permutations of cheers were sounded by party activists and grassroots leaders, mostly in their 50s and 60s, together with deafening whistles whenever the Ministers asked for response from the roughly 500-strong crowd.

Many supporters sang his praises at the rally. The Indian emcee noted his contributions in the Pioneer Indian Activities Executive Committee (IAEC): “Cedric has done a lot to promote the Indian community through various cultural activities.
He takes part in various Frontier CC and IAEC activities, and even recognizes most of them by face and by name!”

The emcee added that Cedric has drafted letters to the authorities for quality Tamil classes and tuition. “He’s an ardent believer in bringing quality education,” she said.

“In the past, no one would want to live in Jurong. Now it’s a thing of the past. Pioneer has transformed!” said Foo, the ward’s incumbent for 10 years.

Foo mentioned the various facilities as evidence of his decade-long track record: From a “wasted land” to a place where “flats are in hot demand” with Jurong Point 1 and 2; Pioneer MRT; SAFRA Club; Jurong Medical Centre and resident centres. He has also organised 6500 activities for the residents with grassroots leaders, to build the “cohesive and warm community” of Pioneer.

“What warmed me are the sessions we have with the needy people every Monday night over 500 weeks. We have written 2500 letters to help them. We take one family at a time, and do all we can to help them because they’re part of Pioneer!” he said, to a rousing round of applause from a crowd.

In addition to the various cultural activities and facilities he had pushed for, Foo also talked about the influx of foreign workers in the area, a worry bugging most Pioneer residents. He said, “I went to foreign workers’ living quarters to understand the situation.”

He mentioned about building a place of their own – a five-million dollar recreation centre, and successfully seeking permission from the authorities to allow beer to be sold inside their dormitories.

“This election will decide our future. Will we end up being divided by politics? Will people say, Singapore’s decline was since the 2011 elections?” – Cedric Foo

Dangling the carrot for voters, he said that closed-circuit television will be installed at every void deck, and posters put up in a variety of languages to advise foreign workers on appropriate behaviours. He also promised more childcare centres and a new primary school.

In comparison, he said that the Opposition have no concrete action. He asked, “How many outings have the Opposition had with you? How many wakes did the Opposition attend? In the 5 years that they were here, where have they volunteered?” and to that question, the crowd fervently replied “Zero! Kosong! Toilet!” with one even replying they “play marbles!”

West Coast GRC members Lawrence Wong, Foo Mee Har and Arthur Fong were also present at the rally to support Foo. They urged residents to re-elect Mr Foo, who is facing a challenge from National Solidarity Party’s (NSP) Steve Chia.

To the wonderment of the crowd, Mr Arthur Fong spoke in Cantonese about Foo, his “good friend and comrade”.

“I have seen Foo’s hard work in the last 10 years, and I hope you would vote for him!”

More seriously, Foo, a banker, spoke of the Government’s success in steering Singapore through the recent financial turmoil. She advised the crowd to vote for the government they trusted and could get the nation through tough times.

As the former Energy Market and Authority (EMA) chief, Wong observed that many top firms like Shell and ExxonMobil have chosen to invest in Singapore due to her political stability, creating job opportunities for Singaporeans.

Singapore’s health-care system was internationally recognised, he added, evident during the World Health Congross in Paris when global health-care leaders approached him.

“They knew about Medicare, Medishield and Medifund, and they knew our health-care system worked and theirs didn’t,” He said.

He talked about a 70-year-old woman whom he met recently. She declared that she would only vote for the PAP, as she could always seek subsidised medical treatment from polyclinics and hospitals.

Mr Wong then asked the crowd, “Which other government in the world serves its people like the PAP does?”

He added, “This election will decide our future. Will we end up being divided by politics? Will people say, Singapore’s decline was since the 2011 elections? Think carefully before you vote, and choose the party that represents Peace and Prosperity.”

GE results

GE results

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Find out the election results here, as well as who your MPs will be. Map updates will lag.

2011: PAP: 60.1%, Opposition: 39.9%

2006: PAP: 66.7%, Opposition: 33.3%


View Larger Map

White: Constituency goes to PAP

Blue: Constituency goes to Opposition

Update:

2.49am – PAP wins Potong Pasir at 50.36% while SPP garnered 49.64% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 81, Opposition – 6

2.21am – PAP wins Jurong GRC at 66.96% while NSP garnered 33.04% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 80, Opposition – 6

2.10am – WP wins Aljunied GRC at 54.71% while WP garnered 45.29% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 75, Opposition – 6

2.03am – PAP wins Choa Chu Kang GRC at 61.20% while NSP garnered 38.80% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 75, Opposition – 1

2.03am – PAP wins Holland-Bukit Timah GRC at 60.10% while SDP garnered 39.90% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 70, Opposition – 1

1.56am – PAP wins Nee Soon GRC at 58.56% while WP garnered 41.61% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 66, Opposition – 1

1.54am – PAP wins Sembawang GRC at 63.89% while SDP garnered 36.11% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 61, Opposition – 1

1.48am – PAP wins Pioneer SMC at 60.73% while NSP garnered 39.27% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 56, Opposition – 1

1.45am – PAP wins East Coast GRC at 54.83% while WP garnered 45.17% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 55, Opposition – 1

1.38am – PAP wins Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC at 56.94% while SPP garnered 43.06% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 50, Opposition – 1

1.34am – PAP wins Punggol East SMC at 54.53%, WP garnered 41.02% of the votes, while SDA got 4.45% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 45, WP – 1

1.28am – PAP wins Ang Mo Kio GRC at 69.33% while RP garnered 30.67% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 44, Opposition – 1

1.22am – PAP wins Sengkang West SMC at 58.08% while WP garnered 41.92% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 38, Opposition – 1

1.19am – PAP wins Yuhua SMC at 66.87% while SDP garnered 33.13% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 37, Opposition – 1

1.12am – PAP wins West Coast GRC at 66.57% while RP garnered 33.43% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 36, Opposition – 1

1.04am – PAP wins Hong Kah North SMC at 70.61% while SPP garnered 29.39% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 31, Opposition – 1

1.04am – PAP wins Tampines GRC at 57.22% while NSP garnered 42.78% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 30, Opposition – 1

12.58am – PAP wins Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC at 64.79% while SDA garnered 35.21% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 25, Opposition – 1

12.56am – WP wins Hougang SMC at 64.81% while PAP garnered 35.19% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 19, Opposition – 1

12.53am – PAP wins Marine Parade GRC at 56.65% while NSP garnered 43.35% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 19, Opposition – 0

12.44am – PAP wins Joo Chiat SMC at 51.01% while WP garnered 48.99% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 14, Opposition – 0

12.30am – PAP wins Moulmein-Kallang GRC at 58.56% while WP garnered 41.44% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 13, Opposition – 0

12.27am – Strong win expected for PAP at Sembawang GRC.

12.10am – PAP wins Whampoa SMC at 66.11% while NSP garnered 32.89% of the votes. Seats won: PAP – 9, Opposition – 0

12.07am – PAP wins Radin Mas SMC at 67.11% while NSP garnered 32.89% of the votes.

12.04am – PAP wins Bukit Panjang SMC at 66.26% while NSP garnered 33.74% of the votes.

12am – PAP wins Mountbatten SMC at 58.65% while NSP garnered 41.35% of the votes.

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Parachute politics in Singapore

Parachute politics in Singapore

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PAP brings in two new citizens as candidates for the upcoming elections. Will this move cost them?

by Terence Lee

Photo: PETER TAYLOR / Creative Commons

POLITICAL parties here have the nasty habit of springing surprises at the eleventh hour. Candidates are announced only weeks before Polling Day, and right now we do not know where most of them are contesting.

Recently, we were blessed to know that Tony Tan and Hazel Poa parachuted from a wobbly Reform Party jet and into the arms of Uncle Meng Seng, secretary-general of the National Solidarity Party.

He announced with great fanfare that his prized catch will be contesting in Moulmein-Kallang GRC, but even that is now uncertain.

Blame it on the short electoral time frame imposed by a government who would rather get on with business and leave behind messy politics, and messy opposition parties unwilling to reveal their cards early.

But the PAP recently gave parachute politics new meaning: Two of their new candidates, Dr Janil Puthucheary and Foo Mee Har, are new citizens. Janil, a paediatrician at KK Children and Women Hospital, came to Singapore in 2001 but only became a citizen in 2008. Mee Har, the global head of premier banking at Standard Chartered Bank, also became a citizen the same year.

Netizens have roundly criticised the commitment of these candidates, but Janil seems to be hardest hit because – gasp – he did not serve National Service. They also questioned whether new citizens like them truly understand the concerns of native Singaporeans.

I, for one, would not judge so quickly. It’s just like meeting someone at a speed dating event – don’t expect to know someone well within five minutes, let alone through a pithy soundbite or newspaper article. An atas Singaporean who has lived here for fifty years may have never interacted with the poor even once in their wasted lives, whereas a new citizen, concerned about the well-being of his or her adopted society, would volunteer at Meet-the-People sessions.

So time is no indicator of empathy.

But I wonder if everyone thinks the same way? Judging by calls for Dr Janil to pick up the SAR21 and shout “arty, arty, arty!”, maybe not. And I suspect this is a vulnerability the opposition parties will exploit during the hustings. Expect them to call out Janil for not being committed to, or understanding the country enough. Mee Har will not be susceptible because she has been in Singapore since 1989.

Citizenship, to some, is a fleeting concept. So is National Service. Why expect Janil to serve NS when many of us are happier without it? There is no point in making him suffer like us.

So, given the anti-foreigner and anti-immigration sentiments pervading Singapore nowadays, I cannot vouch that they will be readily accepted by voters.

But I can be wrong.

If I were them, here’s what I’ll do: To ensure that I get into Parliament, I would play it safe. Don’t start a blog, or have a Facebook page. Don’t make any controversial statements, or be overly aggressive. Toe the party line, at least until I get elected, or become a minister. Let the anchor Member-of-Parliaments I am contesting with do the heavy lifting. That’s what GRCs are for, ain’t it?

The other alternative would be to portray themselves as the rebel in the camp, but that seems unlikely to happen, given how kosher they have been in their interviews.

They should also keep harping on their credentials. Many Singaporeans who don’t really care much about politics will be hypnotised by the fact that Mee Har is some bigwig at a big bank. And don’t forget: apathetic Singaporeans have a significant influence on voting results (as Belmont astutely pointed out), since voting is compulsory.

The only way for opposition parties to counter this would be to put on the pedestal someone more impressive, maybe the CEO of a bigger bank.

Ultimately, whether these two candidates will be a boon to the PAP depends on where their parachutes land. I suspect these characters will appeal to wealthier, cosmopolitan types – Singaporeans who spend plenty of time abroad to work or study. Much will also depend on how the opposition candidates attack their credentials, and how they deflect them. Soon we will know whether both candidates truly understand the concerns of Singaporeans.

Citizenship, to some, is a fleeting concept. So is National Service. Why expect Janil to serve NS when many of us are happier without it? There is no point in making him suffer like us.

So, in an increasingly cosmopolitan Singapore, it will matter less how much time a candidate spends in the country, and more how a candidate makes the most of his or her time here.

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