Monday, July 03, 2006

Singing a different tune

Singing a different tune - all talk to the contrary, the PAP has yet to make any real change in it domestic policies regarding lift upgrading works. Opposition MP, Mr Chiam See Tong reportedly asked for $80m, which was part of the the promised package of benefits that the PAP candidate for Potong Pasir, Mr Sitoh Yipin, said he would deliver if he won. Well, he lost, but still, a significant 44% of the electorate in Potong Pasir voted for him. That's almost 1 in 2 people who desire the PAP's package.

Mr Chiam has now asked for this sum of money for upgrading the facilities in his constituency. It was no surprise that the government, which is majority ruled by the PAP, said no, although in most likelihood, the money has already been set aside. In doing so, it said no to the 44% of Potong Pasir residents that supported the PAP candidate. In doing so, it also practiced what it derides the opposition of doing: show up only during election time to offer sweeteners in order to make themselves known and heard. For now, Potong Pasir is Mr Chiam's problem. To be fair to the PAP, they have been working the ground all these years, but to no avail. The latest denial of the funds shows that the PAP is still clueless about how to win back the Potong Pasir Constituency and its people. It is still sticking to its old policy of Winner Takes All - i.e. the responsibility to look after and provide for the constituency out of the constituents' and the MP's own pockets, never mind that these same people pay taxes to the PAP government.

The government is certainly not for the people in Potong Pasir. Potong Pasir might as well be another country, for all that the PAP cares (or don't care). I wouldn't be surprised if the government were to announce tomorrow that all Potong Pasir registered cars will have to pay toll on all the roads outside of the constituency. This is not impossible, given the sophistication of the ERP system that is already in place.

I had hope to see the PAP government sing a more just and equitable tune. It looks like it will take a long time coming, if it comes at all.

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