News about the Lehman bonds never ends, it seems. Now, it has been reported that PAP-controlled Town Councils are exposed to the Lehman bonds. The officials, people of the PAP government are trying to make light of this fact, saying that the exposure is not significant, that "only a small percentage of their total investments were spent on those affected products" (Yahoo News). Words such as "minimal", "no fear that....the funds will be wiped out...", "guarantees the principal amount..." are being trotted out to control the damage from this situation. On the other hand, Potong Pasir and Hougang, whose Town Councils are under Opposition control, reports that their investments are safe from these toxic investments, as they are either in government bonds or fixed deposits. A very wise, prudent and truly conservative approach to investing the people's money.
Now, if the situation were the other way around, wouldn't the PAP government hammer the Opposition for being irresponsible, reckless, nonchalant, financial fools, etc? Yet the fact is that it is the PAP-controlled TCs that are the ones deserving of these words. They are right - the TC sinking funds belong to the people in the town they manage. But they are wrong when they seem to imply that the losses are insignificant, for, to every citizen, every cent must be accounted for. Perhaps it is timely for these TCs who have invested and lost in the Lehman products to account for the investment in full - how much were purchased, what is the extent of their exposure, and what they potentially have lost. I suppose that TCs do not fall in the bracket of the old (i.e. > 62 years old) nor the ignorant, that instead, the banks will consider them as 'savvy' investors. Which means that they stand to lose the entire investment.
It is necesssary for the affected TCs to give a clear account and not sweep the losses under sweet words.
Image source: morgueFile.com. Author: Gracey