Someone asked me about the strength of the opposition in Singapore on my Facebook and I thought to share my response here:
The question is, who of us who are unhappy with the PAP would stand up and join the opposition and fight in the elections? Who among us who have seen the opposition been sued, bankrupted, made to lose their jobs or threatened with their jobs have stood up and fought back for them? And who among us who keep lamenting about the lack of opposition would do our part and fight with them?
The fact of the matter is that we know that under the PAP, Singapore is going downhill and yet we hold on to the perceived stability and lament the weakness of the opposition, not realising that it is the PAP that is weak itself and will be the one that will bring demise to Singapore.
While we harp on the lack of capability among the opposition, might we remind ourselves that it is us ourselves that have chosen to remain in fear and thus not support or join them in numbers.
May we also remind ourselves that it is us who have chosen to appeal ourselves to the propaganda that the opposition is weak and thus that there is no strong opposition to vote for. Maybe it is us who should acknowledge that it is our fear that prevents us from joining the opposition, and supporting and believing in them.
It would be hypocritical if we continue to lament about the opposition but not take a look at ourselves and realise the fear that inhibit ourselves from recognising our duty to our country, and not just wait for the opposition to do so.
For far too long, Singaporeans wait for the opposition to save us, too weak in our own power and too meek to rise up to the challenge, to unite and show solidarity with the opposition and Singaporeans.
What then is our right if we choose to forgo it and yet at the very next instance, blame the opposition for being weak when their very weakness lie in our own in not having fought for them?
And is it not that the government is not the be all and end all, and that there is also the civil service, think tanks, academics, civil society, media, etc, which have been proposing solutions after solutions for Singapore for the past 10, 20 years but which have all fallen on deaf ears, because the PAP refuse to listen to them nor implement these policies?
Is it not that once we have a new government that these solutions would finally see the light of day, and that will finally be enacted to protect Singaporeans?
The PAP’s propaganda is that only they are strong enough, only they know what needs to be done in Singapore. But as it is, the PAP is the one which has been refusing to implement the solutions for Singapore, when the whole of Singapore has been proposing viable and effective solutions which could have been done, if not for the PAP’s complacency and unwillingness.
So, no, it is not that the opposition is weak. It is that the PAP is weak. And if we continue to allow ourselves to be held beholden to the PAP’s propaganda, then we are allowing ourselves and our country to fail.
The opposition have been proposing solutions for Singapore, and even the Singapore Democratic Party have come out with white papers and SingFirst has discussed how they would apportion the budget to achieve that.
So, we do have a strong opposition, an opposition that has the solutions, an opposition that is only waiting to become the government, so that it can work with the civil service, thank tanks, academics, civil society, media etc, to start implementing these policies to protect Singaporeans. For the government is only 90 people or so but the country is run by individuals like you and I in all sectors of government.
So let’s stop being mired within the propaganda that the PAP has created for the opposition and let us have a fresh new look at ourselves – will we stand, will we join the opposition and will we fight? Let’s look and let’s really research and find out, how the opposition have consolidated and have credible policies to protect Singaporeans.
As John F. Kennedy had said, ask not what our country can do for you, ask not what the opposition can do for us, but ask what we can do for your country and to help strengthen the opposition (I paraphrase).
It is time we not wait for the someone else to change things for us, it is time we stop giving up on our rights and to start believing in ourselves so that if we so believe that unity should be sought, we should seek it by participating in it and bringing unity to Singapore by our very own involvement.
How can we take part in our country’s development?
For a start, we can read and find out more for ourselves, know the truth about what is going on, speak to our friends and people around us, discuss the issues, write about them, write to the government about them, join protests to speak up on these issues, and vote for change by joining the opposition, supporting them etc. There are many things we can do, once we realise what’s going on and then decide that it is in our interests to protect ourselves and our fellow Singaporeans, to then fight so that things can change for the better.
Let’s step up, for the sake of our country and the future of our lives.