Stop giving excuses, Dr Chee

5 May 2002

Dr. Chee,

You say that the local media is controlled by the government and they decide what gets published. Therefore Singaporeans should not believe everything that is in the papers.

Now if what you say is true, can you tell me why I should instead, believe the supposedly true stories you alleged have been censored?

I watched your interview on CNN. Some of the things you mentioned are not true. When are non-graduate mothers with more than 3 kids penalised? Which specific ‘government controlled’ newspaper reported that 93% of Singaporeans are afraid to speak up? No bookstore in Singapore is willing to sell your books? Isn’t Select Bookstore carrying them?

And of course, the Speakers Corner came about because of you? Please. I hope you will address the facts rather than twist them to spite at the government and gain foreign sympathy.

Your style of opposition does not appeal to me and most of my friends here at NUS. When you lost the elections, you put the blame on unfair competition. I have no doubt that if you are in power, you will make things difficult for those in opposition too.

If opposition members like Low Thia Kiang and Chiam See Tong can go against the odds and win a seat in parliament, then please stop giving excuses for your failure. Singaporeans have rejected you. This is a fact, face it.


SDP: Jienin must keep himself better informed.

The Graduate Mothers Scheme proposed in the late 1970s raised much debate (and not a few eyebrows) in Singapore. The survey that he refers to (which revealed that 93 percent of Singaporeans were afraid to speak up) was conducted by the Straits Times in 2001.

A check with the Times, Borders, Popular, Kinokuniya, MPH, and WHSmith will confirm that none of them will sell Dr Chees To Be Free and/or Your Future, My Faith, Our Freedom. The fact that Jienin chooses not to question why bookstores will not selling Dr Chees books but instead mentions Select Books, a small, non-popular bookshop speaks volumes of his/her political persuasion.

It remains a fact that Speakers Corner was set up after Mr William Safire question Mr Lee Kuan Yew at in Davos, Switzerland during a World Economic Forum conference. Mr Safire had questioned Mr Lee at length about the Singapore governments prosecution of Dr Chee for speaking without a permit at Raffles Place. When subsequently asked whether the Singapore government would establish a free speech venue, Mr Lee said maybe.

Jienin is certainly entitled to his opinion about the SDP. It seems, however, that his views are coloured by misconceived notions. Hopefully, by pointing out these errors, Jienin can become more balanced in his thinking and viewpoints.