Tag Archive | "vivian balakrishnan"

S’poreans welcome Vivian Balakrishnan as new Transport Minister

S’poreans welcome Vivian Balakrishnan as new Transport Minister

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This is to congratulate him on his excellent win this GE2015.

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Singaporeans from all walks of life who suddenly found themselves covered in white have come out to welcome Holland-Bukit Timah GRC candidate Vivian Balakrishnan into his new role as Transport Minister.

This after his team won in the General Election 2015 with 66 percent of votes against the Singapore Democratic Party. The national average is 69.9 percent.

One Singaporean, Chuan Bai Yee, said he thinks Vivian fits the role of Transport Minister very well given his popularity: “It is a good idea to pair the job scope according to the popularity of the PAP politician.”

“As you can tell, the transport ministry would suit Vivian Balakrishnan very well.”

Other Singaporeans who were quick to come out to congratulate him on his win, said the role would be for the best interests of Singaporeans.

Jin Jiao Au, another local, said: “It is an honour for him to serve in the transport ministry as he is in politics for the long term.”

“Long term meaning about five years, since it has been said that a day in politics is a long time.”

“Five years would then be a long enough time.”

At press time, competitors for the Transport Minister role include Yaacob Ibrahim, Lim Swee Say and Khaw Boon Wan.

 

 

 

 

 











Environment Minister Vivian Balakrishnan to deliver bigger envelop to Indonesia this year to stop haze

Environment Minister Vivian Balakrishnan to deliver bigger envelop to Indonesia this year to stop haze

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This year’s envelop will be three times bigger than last year’s to be more effective.

vivian-balakrishnan-envelop

In a bid to protect Singapore and fight off Indonesia’s haze, Environment Minister Vivian Balakrishnan will once again personally deliver a big envelop to Indonesia.

The catch? This year’s big envelop will be three times bigger than last year’s for more effectiveness.

One environment ministry spokesperson, Hen Duo Yan, said: “As you can tell, last year’s big envelop that was personally delivered to Indonesia by Vivian Balakrishnan was super effective. It helped to lower the PSI level to 401.”

“If not for the big envelop, the PSI level would have been 800 or more.”

Singaporeans from all walks of life, who saw the picture of the big envelop handed to their Indonesian counterpart, were impressed by the effectiveness of such big envelops in protecting Singapore from haze.

One Singaporean, Ho Long Tong, said: “The envelop is very effective in keeping the PSI level low.”

“I look out my window last year and cannot even see anything because the haze was very thick but when I see the PSI reading on the television and NEA website, all say less than 100 only.”

“Wah PSI reading really kept very low.”

Vivian Balakrishnan gets downgraded to postman

Vivian Balakrishnan gets downgraded to postman

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Travels to Jakarta to deliver PM Lee’s letter and conduct small talk. Nothing gets done.

Alright, we knew Vivian was messed up. What we didn’t realise was how self-congratulatory he could get after making a huge song and dance about fixing the haze, and not actually fixing it.

Patting himself on the back in a Facebook note on Friday evening for going to Jakarta to “personally deliver PM Lee’s letter to President SBY” (by hardcopy I would assume, because Indonesian email doesn’t work?), Vivian then proceeded to boss his Indonesian counterpart, Balthasar Kambuaya around.

Vivian gives himself a thumbs up at 845pm on Friday

Vivian gives himself a thumbs up at 845pm on Friday

Seriously, we did not make up his name.

 

This was what happened, in summary:

1) Vivian complains to Indonesia about the haze

2) Balthasar agreed that the situation sucked and they were going to use water bombs.

3) Vivian learnt that Indonesia had identified 8 offending plantation companies, and urged Balthasar to investigate and prosecute the companies.

4) Vivian told Balthasar to sign the 11 year-old ASEAN haze agreement which had been sitting in parliament because no one gives a shit.

5) Vivian offers to help Balthasar put out the fire and work on sustainable agriculture management projects.

 

Here’s what’s missing:

1) Actual action from Singapore to fix the haze

2) Taking some fucking responsibility for the situation since the 8 suspected companies are likely to be listed in Singapore, instead of passing on the blame

3) Promises to prosecute the suspected companies should investigations prove to identify the culprits, instead of leaving it up to the weak enforcement institutions in Indonesia (hey, they know it too)

 

Vivian says “All in all, it was a good meeting, but we need to see results on the ground”.

Yeah, show some results please.

In the meantime, Indonesian firefighters battle forest fires in Sumatra island while Singapore firefighters wait to get deployed. (AFP PHOTO / HAFIZ ALFARISSI)

In the meantime, Indonesian firefighters battle forest fires in Sumatra island while Singapore firefighters wait to get deployed. (AFP PHOTO / HAFIZ ALFARISSI)

Environment Minister Vivian Balakrishnan resigns

Environment Minister Vivian Balakrishnan resigns

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Cites “unprecedented overwork” as main reason

Vivian Balakrishnan at a press conference on June 19. A picture of the June 20 conference is unavailable, but our correspondent noted that he looked worse.

Vivian Balakrishnan at a press conference on June 19. A picture of the June 20 conference is unavailable, but our correspondent noted that he looked worse.

Environment and Water Resources Minister Vivian Balakrishan obviously has seen better days. In a 3:30am press conference held early Thursday morning, he looked visibly exhausted as he announced his resignation, effectively immediately.

“When I made the decision to be a minister, prestige was a key factor. I wanted power, and I was prepared to serve the nation with all my heart and soul in exchange for a career filled with glory. But never did I expect to be swamped with this deluge of work!” he said as he sobbed openly to reporters.

Since becoming a full minister with the Ministry of Community Development Youth and Sports (MCYS) in 2005, Vivian has been hit by a spate of misfortunes beginning with an unforeseen expose of homeless people forced out into public parks happy campers having a great time outdoors, which sparked the gradual receding of his political career hairline.

Vivian in better days

Vivian in better days

Vivian was subsequently transferred to the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources where he somehow managed to incur the wrath of god who sent a hail of rain and smog down his way.

“I screwed up with the homeless people case ok? I’ll admit that. But I tried to make it good this time. Who would have thought Singapore’s worst haze in history would come on my watch??” said Vivian.

“And its not like I can do much about it. I got insulted by that idiot Agung Laksono, the Minister of Manpower is not responding to all our warnings about hazardous air, and I get blamed for the haze. The haze! Made by another country! Fuck dat. Being a surgeon’s so much easier.”

New Nation’s call to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was met with an automated voice message saying “if shit has hit the fan, leave us a message and we’ll get back to you as soon as its over.”

Singapore Democratic Party sends mixed message

Singapore Democratic Party sends mixed message

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The usually gung-ho opposition party loses its teeth over candidate Vincent Wijeysingha, who could possibly be the first gay MP in Singapore.

By Terence Lee

Dr Vivian and team’s press statement

A video has been posted on the internet showing Vincent Wijeysingha participating at a forum which discussed the promotion of the gay cause in Singapore.

The discussion at the forum also touched on sex with boys and whether the age of consent for boys should be 14 years of age.

In the video, Wijeysingha was introduced as being from the SDP.

In addition to other comments, Wijeysingha stated: “I think the gay community has to rally ourselves. Perhaps one outcome of today’s forum would be, for those of us who are interested, to come together to further consider how we can address the 377 issue as well as further rights issues in relation to gays and lesbians.”

We believe that candidates should be upfront about their political agenda and motives, so that voters are able to make an informed choice.

The issue is not Wijeysingha’s sexual orientation. That is a matter for him.

The video raises the question on whether Wijeysingha will now pursue this cause in the political arena and what is the SDP’s position on the matter.

LET’S be honest: Dr Vivian Balakrishnan is a shrewd tactician.

Conscious of the fact that many Singaporeans still frown upon homosexuality (see survey by NTU), he questions the motives of the SDP and especially its openly-gay candidate Vincent Wijeysingha, who is leading a team in Holland-Bukit Timah GRC against Dr Vivian.

Although liberal-leaning Singaporeans may be disgusted by this assault, there is a segment of Singaporeans who would resonate with it. These voters would be uncomfortable with having a gay MP in Parliament, and they would not overlook his sexual orientation, no matter how brilliant or articulate he proves to be.

Even the SDP knows this.

In a video response to Dr Vivian’s insinuations, SDP Secretary General Chee Soon Juan tried to downplay his party’s liberal stance on homosexuality.

“We are not pursuing the gay agenda and none of our MPs will,” he says at the beginning of the video, and repeats himself near the end: “Will the SDP pursue the gay cause? I answer forthrightly and without equivocation: No.”

He then turns the tables on Dr Vivian, daring him to be transparent about the passe issue of inflated spending during the Youth Olympic Games’ inflated spending. Red herring anyone?

Backed into a corner, the SDP seemed like it was forced to come up with a hasty, half-baked response. And it almost felt like they were outright denying their past support of the Repeal 377A movement. Trails of their previous anti-homophobia campaigns however, are still evident online.

This raises the question: If Vincent does get into Parliament, can he truly guarantee that he will not back the abolishment of the discriminatory law? And if he does support the repeal of 377A, wouldn’t that, in the minds of voters, contradict the statement Chee Soon Juan made?

On hindsight, SDP would have done better by acknowledging their support for gay rights, while at the same time emphasising that they are a political party for all Singaporeans.

The party’s response is a symptom of the identity crisis they are facing, a problem highlighted by media professor Cherian George, blogger Alex Au, and Straits Times journalist Tessa Wong. The SDP of the past has been admired for their loud, stubborn support towards issues it cares about, a stark contrast to the chameleonic tendencies of the Worker’s Party.

Yet recently, they have taken a more pragmatic stance, emphasising bread and butter issues over civil liberties.

Dr Vivian seems heartily aware of this schizophrenia, judging by his remark that Vincent’s team are “strange bedfellows”, since it is a marriage of a left-leaning social worker (Vincent) with a former civil servant (Tan Jee Say) and a psychiatrist Ang Yong Guan, a Christian.

Smelling blood, he struck first, attempting a kill before the opposition party could release their election manifesto.

Whether it will become a major electoral issue in the GRC going forward depends on how Dr Vivian, the SDP, and the media respond to this issue in the coming days.

Much also depends on the voting bloc Dr Vivian is counting on, and if they will succumb to the politics of fear: Fear that a homosexual who makes it into Parliament will not represent the interests of the electorate, and fear that a repeal of 377A will lead to the end of the world and the collapse of civilisation as we know it.

And for those who resist his tactics, is their disgust enough to sway them from the PAP vote?

So here’s where the SDP has to make a decision: Either appeal to the same segment of voters Dr Vivian is wooing, or stay the course, state their convictions, and give these voters the benefit of the doubt. Because in the long run, the SDP could become the party of choice.

Dr Vivian may be a shrewd tactician, but he’s certainly not winning the moral war. The ground is shifting beneath our feet: Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew, who is cool with gay MPs, believes acceptance of homosexuality will grow.

In the book Hard Truths, he says: “Homosexuality will eventually be accepted. It’s already accepted in China. It’s a matter of time before it’s accepted here.”

And when that day comes, let’s see how history will remember Mister Vivian Balakrishnan.