Millionaire Adam Khoo backs Dr Tony Tan for president…

Posted on 08 August 2011

…and so is the 10,000 strong Federation of Tan Clan Associations.

This is shaping up to be a rather bizarre Singapore presidential election. First, local trade union NTUC spoke favorably about Deputy Prime Minister Tony Tan, stopping short of an official endorsement.

Next, the Tan Clan announced that they are backing former him — over Tan Cheng Bock, Tan Kin Lian, and Tan Jee Say. Apparently, the Silver-Haired One was picked because of his contributions to the Association.

Now, even millionaire and entrepreneur Adam Khoo is backing Tony Tan:

It looks like Tony Tan is enjoying an early lead in the Presidential race so far. After all, he’s a very recognizable face in Singapore politics, especially among the middle-aged and older generation. His credentials are also the most impressive.

However, online media like the Temasek Review has been keen to cast Tony Tan as a snobbish, upper-class elitist who has no sympathy for the plight of the poor. This was apparent when they posted an article about him shaking hands with a fishmonger with a thumb sticking out.

Even a Facebook group has sprouted up to capitalize on this disdain for perceived elitism. Comments there couched Adam Khoo in the same light as Tony Tan.

Says ‘Go Gmr': “He is more interested in earning his money than the plight of ordinary Singaporeans…just like the PAP”

Adds ‘Al Jashero': “Omg …. He’s an idiot. These are the kind of singaporeans that makes us suffer!”

Tony Tan is surely not helped by the recent revelation that his son Patrick Tan had a very rare 12-year deferment for his National Service, raising accusations of favortism in some quarters.

It looks like he has his work cut out for him when it comes to appeasing the online audience, many of whom are vocal in their criticisms of him. The other candidates appear relatively unscathed so far.

But his incumbent advantage cannot be underestimated. Just like in the General Elections, an overwhelming anti-establishment online voice did not translate to a defeat for the PAP, although they did suffer a loss of votes compared to the 2006 elections.

How the elections will turn out will also depend on which presidential aspirants pass the eligibility criteria. But we’re probably not going to see a straightforward one-on-one fight like in 1993, which saw PAP- favorite Ong Teng Cheong triumph over opposition-backed Chua Kim Yeow.

These recent developments are perhaps part of an escalating “arms race” of public endorsements. Most recently, we saw National Solidarity Party politician Nicole Seah throwing her weight — and those of her 100,000 fans — behind Tan Jee Say.

Prior to that, former NSP Secretary General Goh Meng Seng has publicly backed Tan Kin Lian.

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- who has written 2685 posts on New Nation.

Wang Pei can be considered a new citizen of Singapore. She has been here all her life, just that her environment's changed beyond recognition.

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  • Sgcynic

    Guess Adam Khoo is throwing his support behind Tony Tan out of personal gratitude instead of objective consideration for the well being of our nation and fellow Singaporeans. Pity. He has the right to his own views just as I am firmly resolved to vote against Tony Tan. I have yet to hear anything definite and FEEL any concern from Tony about Singaporeans…

  • Jack Swagger

    Have you ever noticed that everything Adam Khoo ever says is an advertisement for his I am gifted program?