PM’s May Day statement on Covid

May 5, 2021
Singapore Democrats
PM speaking at May Day Rally (Photo credit: video screenshot from PMO website)

In his May Day Rally speech, Mr Lee Hsien Loong cautioned: “I hope Singaporeans work with us, and not let down our guard. It is not time to relax yet…Do not make the mistakes other countries have done – celebrate too early, relax too fast, let your guard down.”

The SDP will not have the Government take that tone with the people. Singaporeans have been exceedingly cooperative since the onset of the pandemic despite the many bungles the PAP has committed with regards to the spread of the disease.

Singaporeans remember that just prior to the surge of infections in March 2020, the PAP exploited the situation and started campaigning for elections that it wanted to call. The subsequent deterioration of the situation ultimately resulted in the Circuit Breaker.

The lockdown caused the economy to come to standstill resulting in countless businesses, especially the smaller ones, to close and Singaporeans to lose their jobs. As a consequence, the country had to incur nearly $100 billion to dig ourselves out of the hole. 

Despite this, however, Singaporeans continued to obey the rules. Political parties did our part too as we repeatedly urged people to cooperate in order to overcome the crisis.

It is this cooperation that the number of cases started to reduce and eventually become negligible. In the meantime, the lockdown and its aftermath extracted a heavy psychological, physical and financial toll on the people.

What more could the people have done? How many more regulations does the government want the people to follow that they haven’t already? How much more does the PAP want Singaporeans to sacrifice?

Now that the number of cases has spiked again, Mr Lee warns Singaporeans not to “let our guard down”. He ignores the sacrifices that Singaporeans have made and the fact that we have been nervously watching how the government continues to allow foreigners into the country.

Many have warned that some of these imported cases may leak and cause another spike in local infections. The government refused to heed these warnings as it did when Covid-19 first hit our shores.

Mr Lawrence Wong then responded yesterday, saying: “It’s really very hard for us to close our borders permanently.”  

This is another of the PAP’s exaggerated strawman-type argument. No one has ever called for our borders to be closed permanently. All Singaporeans are saying is that the government needs to be extra-cautious when it comes to letting in foreigners, especially from jurisdictions that experience high rates of Covid infection.  

While many other governments took decisive and strong measures to close their borders when circumstances necessitated it, the PAP insisted on letting in foreigners even as the number of imported cases here rose.

Mr Wong added that “we’ve always taken a risk-based approach in managing our borders from the start.”

Yes, but was the risk warranted? The answer is an obvious no given the current spike. And why do Singaporeans always have to bear the consequences of these risks and the ministers none when their decisions fail? Why are such risks always balanced on the people’s backs?

Mr Lee and his Ministers would do well to focus their attention on the actions of the Multi-Task Force and stop wagging their fingers at the people.

Singaporeans are watching closely as the nation cannot afford another surge of the disease. The PAP will be wholly to blame if the disease triggers another unthinkable lockdown.