To be in politics, one’s heart has to be in the right place and character is crucial, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Wednesday (Sep 2) night.
Speaking at the People’s Action Party’s first rally of the 2015 General Election, Mr Lee said that while this election was about the future of Singapore and that it was important to discuss the issues, voters should also scrutinise the candidates.
“Take a look at the people they have, the people we have, and ask: ‘What sort of people are you? What do you represent? Is your heart really with me?’” he said.
“Sometimes we have candidates with flawed characters – people who should never be in politics. But they just sweep this aside, they hope that after some years, slowly it will disappear into the distance, forgotten. Then they say, ‘we look forward! Please don’t look behind, you’ll find my black tail’.
“I think that’s very dangerous. We have to look behind. Whose tail is that one? Why is it there? How do you explain? Have you really changed?”
“The other thing which can happen is, when people do something wrong and they don’t fix it, they don’t admit it, they pretend it doesn’t exist, they explain why it’s not a problem. Then sometimes they say, ‘well I haven’t been sent to jail … so everything is okay’,” Mr Lee said.
If this was the standard we set for politicians, he said, “then I think Singapore is in very serious trouble. We must have high standards for politics. Do you care? Are you doing the right thing? Are you doing your best? Are you serving Singapore well?”