Through the decades, the PAP has run a vicious and relentless attack campaign against Dr Chee Soon Juan. With the GE around the corner, it is expected that the PAP will resort to this dirty tactic again.
To counter the propaganda, the SDP has published a new book Teacher Thinker Rebel Why? Portraits of Chee Soon Juan written by people who know or have worked with the SDP secretary-general. Here are some of the things they said:
Dr Chee was not just content to speak up for the people. He was the guy who constantly and deliberately ran into the electric fence to remind us we were prisoners.
I resented him for it because I would rather pretend the fence was there to keep us safe.
- Joshua Chiang, former editor of TOC
Chee’s mode of political action, situated in the liberal democratic value system, like Gandhi’s, is to challenge laws which are unjust and unfair in a way that seemed totally out of sync with Singapore’s political and social culture.
- Constance Singam, former president of AWARE
His prose is precise, his tone inspiring, and his idealism infectious. I have come to identify with his compassion and empathy for the lot of the poor, socially disadvantaged and politically disenfranchised, and to appreciate his perseverance in fighting for a fairer and better Singapore.
He opened my eyes to the tyranny of unjust laws imposed by authoritarian regimes and taught me that there can never be justice without freedom, and vice versa.
- Dr Tan Lip Hong & Dr Leong Yan Hoi, SDP healthcare advisors
Soon Juan’s years as a lone wolf nibbling at unjust laws, policies and government, at huge personal costs to himself, restores my faith in politicians. For all that he has done, he deserves much more than just quiet support from us.
If Singaporeans continue to stay on the sidelines and watch others fight on their behalf, the comet would burn itself out and we would be thrown back into darkness.
- Dr Wong Souk Yee, NUS Lecturer
But all those who have come in contact with him personally felt that the characterization of Dr Chee as a “near psychopath” was totally unfair.
He chose the path of civil disobedience when it was not popular and paid the price for his actions with many spells in jail. While these actions may have turned off many Singaporeans who are by nature risk-averse, I think that they showed a rare personal commitment to the cause of democracy.
- Prof Paul Tambyah, SDP healthcare advisor
CSJ never failed to listen to my arguments and very often saw my point of view. A real leader is one who listens as much as he speaks. And I know CSJ takes the time to listen and consider differing views.
- Jaslyn Go, SDP Asst Treasurer
Dr Chee has led a struggle for true democracy in the country he loves for over 20 years through the leading roles he has held in the Party. He has been a leading light too in the creation of the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats.
- Sir Graham Watson, former MEP
Like many Asian democrats, Dr Chee and I have often asked these questions: Why must it be a choice between development and democracy when in fact the two are not mutually exclusive?
Dr Chee is a democrat; Dr Chee is a patriot. He is not against the economic gains of Singapore. He is not against the free market. He is merely asking valid questions like how much of this wealth trickles down to the majority of the people.
- Sam Rainsy MP and Leader of the Opposition, Cambodia
The fact that he was willing to let Chiam See Tong come back as a leader to a party that Soon Juan had invested all his youth and kept afloat with all his sacrifices says a lot to me about his dedication.
- Dr Wong Wee Nam. SDP healthcare advisor
Come to the launch on 11 April 2015, Saturday and get the book for $20. Or order a copy online here or email us at [email protected]
Proceeds from the sales will go to the SDP's GE campaign. So get your copy and let's get Dr Chee and SDP into Parliament!
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