RECAP: Parliamentary debate on 38 Oxley Road just a show of “ownself clear ownself”

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Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB

2 days of parliamentary debate on the Oxley Road saga have just wrapped up and Singaporeans are still left scratching their heads about when the Lee family feud will be resolved.

Here are the highlights of the sessions which appear to be nothing more than a show of “ownself clear ownself”

  • PM Lee delivered a ministerial statement, offering his version of events. His siblings later disputed his statement thoroughly in a 4-page document, rendering his whole speech just another page in the he-said-she-said drama.
  • He then said Lee Kuan Yew’s children are not above the law before contradicting himself that he will not take his siblings to court.
  • Despite the lifting of the party whip, PAP MPs were decidedly soft on the PM, with Janil Puthucheary going full “kiss-ass.” Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean and Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong threw words of affirmation behind PM Lee, as expected.
  • Nominated MPs called on PM to set up independent inquiry where younger Lee siblings can have a fair space to resolve the matter. They were ignored.
  • Workers’ Party MPs brought up questions about the conflicts of interest in the Attorney-General’s office and urged PM Lee to resolve the matter once and for all in court. PM Lee called them out for not accusing the Government directly and put the responsibility of providing evidence for his own siblings’ claims on the shoulders of MPs.
  • PM Lee shed tears saying he hopes to reconcile with his siblings.
  • Parliament closed after it was declared, “There is no basis to the allegations of (abuse of) power made by my siblings, Dr Lee Wei Ling and Mr Lee Hsien Yang.”

Perhaps the best part of both days of the “debate” are the following photos suggesting how exciting Parliament was this week:

Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB
Photo: Cinorom Elicebmi FB

 

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33 comments

  1. When a person is estranged & entrapped as HL for grievous wrongdoing…isn’t it natural to cry…out of fear, out of shame, out of helplessness. Pls stop insulting Sgpns’ intelligence.

  2. Robin Chee says:

    5. ESM’s Goh’s speech is deeply troubling. Firstly, he made the claim that most Singaporeans are tired of this saga and wish to move on. On what basis is he saying that? From his casual observations or the random poll of his friends and constituents? Secondly, he chided Png Eng Huat for reading out the siblings’ allegations on Facebook, which he believed is almost akin to spreading rumours. So, highlighting claims by accusers is similar to spreading rumours? If that’s the case, I seriously don’t know what’s left for opposition MPs to say anymore. And PAP MPs better not read out or state any unsubstantiated claims by any supporters in future, even if it’s to showcase a general mistrust in the opposition by the people. Thirdly, he asked the opposition to state their position on the matter. How on earth is that possible when the main accusers and stakeholders are not present? PM made an even more astonishing suggestion later on. He suggested the WP to reach out to the siblings and be the middle-men to help them make their arguments. So, within a short span of a few days, the WP have to successfully persuade the siblings to release all the evidence (if any) of wrongdoing to them and then prepare a detailed representation in the short duration of 2 days? Would it be fair for the siblings to voice their accusations through a third party? Would they want to? Come on, this is just plain absurd and ridiculous.
    6. Heng Swee Keat’s example of LKY changing his mind about the bilingual policy as an illustration to support his argument that LKY may change his mind about whether to demolish the house is just plain laughable. How is a change in mindset about an educational policy be similar in magnitude to the fate of one’s much treasured precious private home?
    7. Indranee Rajah tried to explain the possibility that LKY may not have the privilege of receiving independent advice before his final will and thus may not have made the will with all the relevant support is shocking and insulting. Are you saying that the founding father of Singapore who topped his Cambridge Law class and who had remained lucid and intellectually supreme even up to his death was incapable of understanding the implication of agreeing to the clause in the last will which indicates demolition of the said house? Oh and using Mr. Heng’s example in the previous point, since it is not surprising that LKY had changed his mind before his death, could he have also changed his mind to preserve his house in the second and third last will too? So why the big hoo-ha about the last will “suddenly” including the demolition clause?
    8. Indranee claimed that Lucien Wong and Hri Kumar are one of the top legal minds in the nation so they should take the best person for the job despite the very real perception of a conflict of interest in the eyes of the public. According to which specific study/surveys/reports are you referring to, Indranee? Even if you can claim that these reports are not inherently subjective, you did admit that Lucien or Hri are one of the top legal minds but they are not the top, are they? So, wouldn’t it make more sense to take someone as good but without the very real perceived claims of a conflict of interest? More importantly, PM claimed that he personally recommended Lucien for the role of AG because he had witnessed first-hand how competent he was. Isn’t this a deeply troubling method of selection as the other potential candidates did not get a chance to work for PM and thus demonstrate to PM how competent they were?

  3. Robin Chee says:

    The parliamentary debate may be over but it has left several of the most pertinent questions ignored and instead raised more doubts about the PM and the government.
    1. PM’s refusal to sue his siblings despite their grave accusations on his integrity and reputation. His reason, after all the tear-jerking drama, is that he doesn’t want to aggravate this family quarrel and that he wanted to fulfil his father’s wish to look after his siblings. So, it’s blatantly clear that the PM has placed his personal interests/desires over those of his nation. Because from what the political leaders have espoused over the years (including the wise statements by ESM Goh), not suing (regardless of the party responsible for the defamatory remarks) is akin to an admission of wrong-doing. In previous instances, when quizzed on why it was not enough to just refute the remarks made by an accuser, political leaders have reiterated that suing is the ideal manner to clear one’s name as the Court would be the most appropriate/fair/qualified arbiter. By refusing to sue, the PM left many citizens wondering if he did have something to hide (even if he didn’t) and severely damages the nation he governs as many local and foreign observers would now view the nation with doubtful and suspicious eyes. More importantly, if the PM could place his siblings above the perceived reputation of the country, we have to ask if there’s anything at all that’s more important than the perceived reputation of the country that would prompt the PM to sue his own siblings. It’s one thing to be labelled incompetent in formulating certain policies but it is DANGEROUS for a leader to be willing to disregard the perceived reputation of his nation and his own recommended policy (of suing) for the self-serving purpose of keeping his family intact.
    2. PM remarked that the issue would be further escalated and aggravated if he were to sue his siblings as the process of doing so could take years and it would lead to a full-scale Korean drama. But is this really true? When you take legal actions against the accusers, the accusers would be (reasonably expected to be) fearful or concerned enough not to post anything defamatory or potentially defamatory in the meantime (unless they have substantial evidence that their accusations are true). So, in this case, how would suing prolong the drama? And would not suing reduce the drama? No. Because even the PM did admit that he wouldn’t be able to control his siblings from posting any more allegations after the Parliamentary debate.
    3. Why was the Ministerial Committee set up in the first place if it cannot make any binding recommendation? Sure, you can claim that it’s just the “normal procedure” but is it really necessary for valuable resources to be channelled to this largely impotent committee? As the issue of what must be done to the said property would probably not need to be addressed until 20-30 years later, what’s the point of setting up the committee as the recommendations would probably be deemed outdated or invalid by the government of the day 20-30 years later? Even if LWL were to move out suddenly tomorrow, surely, we can rely on our supremely talented and well-paid ministers to convene a committee and make a decision before long? I think it all boils down to the inflexibility and inefficiency of this government primarily as the result of too many draconian rules and red tape. I can still remember the Director of the Ministry I was interviewing with animatedly false-banging his head against the window to demonstrate to me how red tape had tortured him to no end.
    4. Lawrence Wong claimed that even though public opinion was considered in considering whether the said house should be abolished or preserved, it was eventually not followed as “public opinion can change from time to time”. He established that one poll showed that the majority of the public wanted the house preserved after the publication of “Hard Truths”, another poll showed that most wanted it to be demolished after LKY died. Could Mr. Wong please enlighten us which polls he was referring to and whether the polls were representative and statistically significant? And even if he wanted to showcase that the public is fickle-minded, he would need to showcase that the same group or largely the same group of people were interviewed, right? And does it mean that public opinion can be followed only when the opinion remained the same over years, decades, centuries? If so, what’s the point of engaging the public as it would be impossible or unbelievable that public opinion would remain unchanged over a period of time? So why can’t he take the latest public opinion (assuming it’s statistically significant) and just follow it? Or can he educate us when would the government actually follow public opinion? For instance, must it be strong and unchanging over decades, and it must also correspond with the guidance and suggestions of “experts”? And since preservation of monuments is geared primarily to benefit the people, shouldn’t the citizens have more say on the matter instead of some pseudo experts.

  4. Colin Seow says:

    PR tears …works like a charm to the tender hearted. I saw a video of the NK Leader shed tears when he was watching a very sad and sentimental song being sung on stage. For awhile thought that this man cannot be all that bad if he could shed tears he must have some humanity left in him…I think it all so hilarious when weighed against the atrocities he allowed in NK and the impoverished masses in a country which could have done well economically instead of racing to become a destructive nuclear power.

  5. Facebook Profile photo
    Veritas Wallace ( User Karma: 0 ) says:

    the younger siblings are now being painted as a small , petty descendants of a great man who are all out to destroy the legacy of the great man..

    I hope they will not not keep silent…

  6. Cai Lee says:

    Yes is just said words from the leader and PAP senior ministers only. Nothing else. If 38Oxley house saga continue without any clear directive which will affects Singapore and it’s future..then PM Sir you are in a wrong doing as leader of this Country to cause the entire country to suffer with you. In the end PAP will suffer too.

  7. Absolutely a 1-sided version of events n purported facts. Well, apples don’t fall far from the trees.
    Meritocracy and Integrity the cornerstone of SG government is a big ‘?’. Poor siblings – fighting against the massive machinery of government and also govt-controlled media.

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