Nelson Mandela Memorial: lesson for the repressive Singapore government

Such is the towering stature of Nelson Mandela that more than 100 world leaders past and current attended his Memorial. Among them were autocrats, dictators and others whose sole preoccupation in office is to enrich themselves, their families and cronies.

The US President drew the loudest cheer when he rose to deliver his eulogy.

Mandela he said fought for freedom, human rights and democracy. His remark that some leaders endorsed Mandela’s struggle but did not practise what they preach must have made some of them squirm in their seats.

Which reminds me of the ruling PAP regime farce and hypocrisy. In our National Pledge we promise to build a democratic society but the regime asserts that the National Pledge is merely an aspiration.

It’s reasonable to claim the Singapore government is the most authoritarian country in ASEAN, and brooks no dissent. It’s is even trying to curb what we read on the Internet.

Among the dignitaries at the Memorial was our Finance Minister. If asked in Cabinet meeting to give his views and feedback will he urge the regime to practise what they preach about building a democracy?

I doubt it. He has to keep an eye on the ball i.e. his million dollars salary.

Perhaps, just as in the schools, Cabinet meetings should begin with the recitation of the National Pledge. Not that it’ll help given the repressive values of the ruling PAP.

But no harm serving as a reminder.

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