PAP must pay for police security like everyone else

November 4, 2005
Singapore Democrats

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4 Nov 05

The police have announced that they will provide security and traffic regulation for the PAP award ceremony this weekend.

In 2001, the SDP had organised a public rally at the Yio Chu Kang Stadium. The Government stated that we had to bear the cost of hiring police officers from CISCO. As a result the Singapore Democrats bore the cost for police security at our rally which was opened to the public.

Earlier the Think Centre had organised another rally to help Mr J B Jeyaretnam raise funds for his legal battles with the PAP. The Government also insisted that Think Centre pay for security measures. The event was also open to the public.

The current situation where the police are “overseeing security arrangements” for what is ostensibly a private PAP function seems completely hypocritical. Is the PAP paying for the security measures. If not, the double standard is a gross misuse of power and taxpayers’ money by the ruling elite.

Is it not bad enough that the PAP uses the Istana to interview its election candidates, organizes a party contingent to be displayed at National Day Parades, allows its members to use civil servants to do work for them involving personal court cases, abuses their powers as ministers to get information from the police and then use the information to sue their opponents in their personal capacities, and so on?

Are we living in an empire where Singaporeans are subjects and laws are applied arbitrarily and public funds are used for the benefit of the ruling party? Or are we living in a republic where the ruling party, like everyone else, is subject to the written Constitution and is accountable to citizens?

If this is a republic then what is good for the goose must also be good for the gander. If opposition parties and civil society organizations are made to pay for police security when organising events for the public, then the PAP jolly well abide by the rules – rules that it makes – by doing the same, and especially when the event is a private one.

It is time that Singaporeans wake up to reality and take the initiative to rein in the PAP. For the sake of our country’s future the PAP must not be allowed to behave the way that it has in the past. This latest incident is just one more instance where the PAP treats the citizens of Singapore with utter contempt and disrespect.

CHEE SOON JUAN
Secretary-General
Singapore Democratic Party
4 November 2005