“Singapore may be 54 years old but our democracy is an infant, stifled” –

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Former Non-Constituency Member of Parliament (NCMP) Yee Jenn Jong reminisced about the time he entered into Marine Parade GRC after the boundary changes absorbed Joo Chiat SMC into the former.

Despite losing to the People’s Action Party (PAP) with only 35 per cent of the votes, he wrote about the hard work his team put in, adding, “The work did continue in this GRC and indeed elsewhere. We started regular food distribution in different parts of the GRC even though resources are limited and we depend largely on goodwill donations and resources and time of volunteers”.

Even though they had no access to People’s Association (PA) facilities and “resources funded to the tune of $1 billion a year”, Yee wrote that he has “lost count of the tonnes of stuff I had to transport in my own car as well as that of volunteers during the past 4 years. When we were short on people, even my children were roped in”.

He noted that his and his fellow team members’ contributions do not just stop there; they contribute to policy discussions through social media posts, comments to the press and feedback to their own teams.

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“Singapore may be 54 years old but our democracy is an infant, stifled and Singaporeans constantly told that we only have enough talent for one team”, Yee wrote.

It was because he believed that Singapore should not be solely dependent on one team, he joined politics and the Workers’ Party in 2011. “Without competition, there will be no push for improvements. I saw the lack of willingness to push for changes in policies, even when these were necessary, because things seemed well so far by international standards, and changes involve risks that policymakers dared not make because they wish to avoid mistakes. Many changes had come about since 2011. The government will say these were all along in their plans but I leave you to believe it or not”, he wrote.

He also emphasized upon building a credible alternative, adding, “It will take more to join and more have been joining. The work continues”.

TISG has reached out to Yee for clarification and comment. /TISG

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