By: B Goode
When it came to the chance of becoming Singapore’s President, Tan Cheng Bock was quick off the block. Too quick even; jumping the gun by announcing his intention to run for the Presidential election and forming a committee even before the government had finalized the criteria for eligibility only for the government to say : “Sorry no can do unless you are a Malay.”
But when it came to the chance of becoming the opposition coalition leader and thus the chance of becoming the next PM, Tan Cheng Bok wasn’t too eager saying to the effect : “Errr….let me think about it.”
Why? What’s the reason for his reluctance? Why the sudden dousing of his burning desire to serve the nation? Why was the beaver no longer eager?
Well, that’s Tan Cheng Bok in nutshell for you.
Let’s be honest. Unlike being a coalition leader, to be a President is comparatively a walk in the park.
- With the PAP in government, the people would be more keen to have an opposition as the President.
- The people knew that the President, regardless of his political affiliation, would have little to no effect on their day-to-day lives and so they would be willing to vote anyone just to troll the government.
- It is cheaper to run for the President because you are only representing yourself.
- There is little politicking, no political maneuvering, no party affairs to deal with simply because there is no party to begin with.
- And once you become the President, you practically have nothing to do. There are no policies to formulate, no cabinet meetings to attend, no Parliamentary sittings, no party housekeeping, heck even your speeches are drafted, vetted and approved by the government. Although you do need to brush up on your toasting skills. And oh waving too….
So, for Tan Cheng Bok to be hesitant to accept the offer of being the coalition leader is not out of character; a self-entitled glory seeker who hungers for prestige and recognition but without the hard work. Tan Cheng Bok knew that had he been eligible for the last Presidential election, he stood a great chance of winning. He only needed to kiss a few babies and look pretty and the job would have been his.
On the other hand, to be the leader of an opposition coalition he would have to deal with people like Chee Soon Juan.
Too much hard work bro.
I rest my case.