Categorized | Politics

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Fact is always stranger than fiction

Posted on 10 February 2012

As NMP, Joscelin Yeo rose to speak against the loanshark scourge. And you know what happened next, right…

Some days, you walk around throwing your hands up in the air, shaking your head relentlessly and admitting to not understanding anything at all.

And this is probably one of those days.

Because if you’ve been keeping up to speed with the latest happenings, you should be well aware that a new slate of nine Nominated Members of Parliament (NMPs) will be sworn in this Valentine’s Day.

But nobody has explained to you why things are the way they are.

For example, the most blatant question on everyone’s mind is: Why must NMPs be selected to represent “functional groups” in the first place? Why?

What is the function of the functional group categories that include business and industry, tertiary education and media ?

Because what’s really stopping NMPs sworn into parliament from speaking on issues that are outside their given field of expertise?

And when you scan your mind’s eye, you come up with the best example as to why the system of selecting NMPs to represent functional groups is a load of crap.

You remembered that previously, our ex-national swimmer and golden girl, Joscelin Yeo, was made an NMP because she has a sporting streak running through her and so, presumably, she can represent the interest of the sporting community.

Right.

And then you recall in greater detail: In July 2009, Joscelin was sworn in for two-and-a-half years as NMP.

For her role as an NMP, she gets a monthly allowance of $2,000.

And Joscelin spoke a grand total of seven times in those 30 months.

You then click on each of the Hansard records, also known as Singapore Parliament Reports, documenting the topics she spoke on and what she said:

Moneylenders (Amendment) Bill
Value of learning (Education)
Parental involvement in a child’s life
Non-deferment for National Service for sportsman
Supporting the 2011 Budget
Tuition
Foreign sports talent and sports administrators

A quick back-of-the-hand calculation reveals that each time she rose to speak, it cost taxpayers an average of $8,000.

Those are indeed very expensive words to be speaking.

And then you noticed that she spoke about the Moneylenders (Amendment) Bill in her maiden speech on Jan. 12, 2010, to tackle the loanshark scourge more effectively.

This is not even the purview of sports, you wonder out loud. What’s she saying?

And because fact is always stranger than fiction, you pull out this year-old news article announcing that Joscelin Yeo’s father was arrested for loanshark activities in March 2011.

And then you throw your hands up in the air, shake your head relentlessly and admit to not understanding anything at all.

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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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  • Wilfred Alexander

    Reading this just cracked me up. Was having a bad day but all that changed with this article! Unfortunately when the truth settled in, I just had to breath a sigh of resignation that this article was in fact…FACT!