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Opposition supporters thank Teo Chee Hean for his help

Posted on 27 May 2012

They want the Deputy Prime Minister to engage in more petty politicking in the future to help swing tide against the PAP.

Why worry about bigger national issues when you can launch personal attacks? Photo stolen from Yahoo!

By Teo Chew Lang

Opposition supporters are ecstatic about the Workers’ Party’s victory in the Hougang by-election.

And they have one person to offer heartfelt thanks to: Deputy Prime Minister and PAP’s No. 2 man, Teo Chee Hean

Over the course of more than a week of by-election campaigning, Chee Hean had repeatedly called Workers’ Party’s Png Eng Huat’s integrity into question.

And that was because of Chee Hean’s gripe, which was what again?

Well, no one knows for sure.

After speaking to 3,000 people on the ground, this reporter found that no one in Hougang and in wider Singapore knows exactly what Chee Hean was harping on about for so long or why.

People’s normal response? There was no strong message. No underlying theme. No clear indication where on Earth it was heading.

It was just personal attack after personal attack without much substance.

The campaign that was run by Chee Hean, in essence, was as messy as diarrhoea.

Mostly, this lack of interest in what Chee Hean had to say about Png’s integrity stems from the fact that Singapore is plagued by greater and more far-reaching national issues that have not been addressed but are almost as big as Fukushima’s nuclear meltdown: A public transport train system that suffers from PMS, an economy that is stalling and flood waters that come up to here whenever there is a sprinkle.

To put things in perspective, an Hougang voter said in impeccable Teochew: “Harping on the NCMP issue is as pointless as worrying about having crooked teeth after you’ve just been diagnosed with AIDS. And finding out your wife is in fact a man.”

But not as if Chee Hean’s hijacking of Desmond Choo’s campaign is frowned upon now that the by-election results are out.

Another native Teochew speaker, Ms. Tan, said: “We need more PAP politicians to practise petty politicking. This will annoy Singaporeans to no end because the mainstream media will pick up on the puny stuff and run along with it. The real issues will not be addressed and this will motivate people to vote against the PAP who appear to be out of touch and full of themselves.”

Self-styled political pundit, Eric de Yaya, concurred but offered an alternative explanation.

He said: “Chee Hean did say before that he is rubbish at politics. So, we probably shouldn’t be surprised that he doesn’t get it and goes about taking pot shots when more could be done to set the agenda.”

If that’s the case, why let Chee Hean take over Desmond’s by-election campaign if he was such an unskilled politician?

“Well, you know the expression ‘Takes one to know one?’ Well, yeah, that’s why,” de Yaya said.

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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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