Singapore Presidential Election 2017 : Beware The Backlash


By: B Goode


If you think that this coming Presidential Election (PE) is all about Malay, Malayness, the Constitution and what not, well think again.

Anyway, what’s the big fuss about whether someone is a Malay or not? Just check the NRIC lah….duh!

This Presidential Election will no doubt be a litmus test on PAP’s popularity. It will not matter who will be contesting, be it 100% Malay (if ever there is such a person), an Orang Laut, an Orang Asli, Dayak or Halimah Yacob. Any candidate seen as coming from the PAP stands a good chance of losing.

It must be remembered that during the last PE, former PAP Minister, Tony Tan won with only 34% of the votes. To put it in perspective, for every 3 Singaporeans he met and shook hands with, or having their babies kissed, 2 didn’t vote for him.

A PE is unlike a General Election (GE). A GE will decide on the government of the day. So even though Singaporeans might not be happy with the PAP government, they might be more afraid of being governed by say the WP or (touch wood) the SDP. Imagine Chee Soon Juan as the PM of Singapore……/shivers.

There is after all a great difference between unhappiness and fear.

A PE on the other hand, despite what the government say, is still seen by many Singaporeans as an exercise to choose someone to wave at them during National Day. They don’t see the President as someone who will decide on their day-to-day affairs. It wasn’t the President who increased the water price, or who decided on the price of an HDB flat, or who decided on what were criteria of a foreign talent. In fact, the President is powerless to even stop all these unpopular policies. So yeah. The President is just someone who waves at them during National Day and who toasts foreign Heads Of States when they come visiting.

As a result, Singaporeans take this once in 5-years opportunity to use the PE to show their unhappiness with the PAP government, and boy do they have lots of grouses:

  • The ownself-check-ownself debacle that was the 38, Oxley Road saga where many Singaporeans saw the parliamentary wayang show as an exercise of sweeping things under the carpet.
  • Consequently, the damage it caused to the infallible aura of the Lee family and thus the current PM, Lee Hsien Loong.
  • The unending MRT problems where you’d have a better chance of getting to your destination on time by taking an oxcart. In fact, many companies are now scheduling their meetings in the afternoon because they simply cannot be certain that their employees will be punctual due to the utterly unreliable MRT.
  • The high cost of living where the government seems to be `bochap’ to, as exemplified by the 30% water price hike.
  • The more frequent breakdowns of the infrastructure under the weight of unending wave after wave of foreign talents which don’t seem to abate. When will this exercise end?
  • Consequently, the stagnation of wages.
  • Low quality Ministers who seemed to govern in absentia. But when they did decide to speak, only rubbish came out from their mouth. `Milk is milk’.
  • And lots more…

So unless something happens between now and the PE, and unless Halimah Yacob gets a walkover, she may lose the elections.

The unhappiness on the ground is so great that even a teary apology from PM Lee will not cut it. Not even a $300 GST rebate. $2000 on the other hand….

So beware the backlash of penned-up anger and frustration that will be unleashed against the PAP candidate this coming PE.

Release the Kraken!

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