Chee Soon Juan: Policy Alternatives in Parliament Only Possible With The Presence of Opposition Parties

Minister Lawrence Wong has called on Singaporeans to be active in seeking solutions to improve Singapore. This seems a curious statement given that many have been suggesting ways only to be met by a deaf ear.

The SDP, for example, has been coming up with alternative policies. And whenever we launch them, we invite the relevant ministers and their officials to attend (for example, see here, here and here).

They have consistently declined to attend. And now the Government pretends that there has not been alternative voices coming up with concrete proposals on how we can better manage Singapore’s affairs.

In addition, following the launch of the papers we sent the documents to the ministers. We even sent our healthcare paper to the Medishield Life Review Committee, saying that the SDP “look[ed] forward to contributing to the review of our healthcare system.”

In fact, the SDP has drawn up comprehensive policies in key areas:

Healthcare. The SDP National Healthcare Plan: Caring For All Singaporeans

Housing. Housing A Nation: Holistic Policies For Affordable Homes

Population. Building A People: Sound Policies For A Secure Future

Education. Educating For Creativity and Equality: An Agenda For Transformation

Ministerial salaries. Ethical Salaries For A Public-Centred Government

Malay community. A Singapore For All Singaporeans: Addressing The Concerns Of The Malay Community.

(We will be launching our policy on the economy in the near future.)

In fact, the Government has been adopting some of the measures that the SDP has proposed. (Read PAP should acknowledge SDP’s contribution)

Singaporeans should note that even though the Government knew that the SDP had drawn up our policies, it refused to invite us to attend the National Conversation even as it extended the invitation to other opposition parties.

In the past, the Government accused the opposition of not coming with better ideas to run the country. Now that the SDP has drawn up our alternative policies, it tries to hush them up and continue to paint the opposition as not being constructive.

This is why Singaporeans despair at the type of politics that the PAP plays.

In a recent Parliamentary sitting on the debate on constructive politics, PM Lee Hsien Loong said: “In a serious parliament, the Government presents its policies. The Opposition presents its alternatives.”

Let’s give PM Lee what he wants and get the SDP into Parliament.



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