Statement from Dr Tan Cheng Bock on the latest comments from parliament and the possible considerations for our Singapore.

I refer to Senior Minister Teo Chee Hean’s speech in parliament where he commented on my idea of a caretaker government. I think he may have missed my main point, which is simply this. In view of Covid-19, the Government must now make a choice. It is either to call an early GE in 2020, or to wait until the last possible date in 2021. The issue is how to exercise this choice. If the Government chooses to call an early GE, they will expose over 2.6 million Singaporeans to Covid-19  which will run the risk of creating a health crisis.

SM Teo also said in Parliament that an early GE will allow Singapore to decide who they want to captain the ship into the future. But can he accept that an early GE means, that the ship will potentially carry many more Singaporeans infected with Covid-19. And is this the risk he is prepared to take with our over taxed health system?

A later election may take place at a time when the Covid-19 situation has improved which is a realistic hope and not a fanciful wish. Vaccines are being tested as we speak. We are doubling down on social containment measures, and these will get even more effective. We remain hopeful that we will not see a rise in imported cases after the recent few waves. The whole world has stepped up their Covid-19 fighting measures. China is a good example of an improving situation.  So, there is cause for hope in time.

I think Singapore deserves to be given the fighting chance to wait out this season without having to worry about a potentially hazardous early general election. Now if my prediction is wrong and the Covid-19 situation becomes so bad that the Government cannot hold general elections by April 2021, we have laws to cover an emergency situation such as the Emergency (Essential Powers) Act where section 2 states that “the President may make any regulations (referred to in this Act as essential regulations) which he considers desirable or expedient for securing the public safety, the defence of Singapore, the maintenance of public order and of supplies and services essential to the life of the community.”

So the powers are there. The only question is how will the President exercise those powers?The risk here is but a legal constitutional problem as to whether a caretaker government can be formed. However, a constitutional problem does not infect people with Covid-19. A constitutional problem will not take away the life of loved ones. A constitutional problem can be overcome.

So here is the choice: Hold an early election and cause a far worse health crisis. Or delay the general election to 2021 and face a possible constitutional problem if no general election can be held by April 2021?

The answer is obvious. We are now talking about life and death. Real lives are at stake. We must put all our energies and resources to fight Covid-19. The GE can wait.  Our ministers and ministries are already hard pressed. If an election were to occur, they would have to spread themselves out even thinner, deciding how to safely, if that is even possible, to carry out the process of the elections. It is not a simple matter – a lot of energy and time will be spent planning the logistics and mechanics of this and that. Can we afford this now?

The government’s utmost priority now is to prevent a health crisis and focus the next 12 months on virus containment. Singaporeans must be given the chance and hope that in the 12 months, we will have a safer Singapore through the tremendous efforts of the international health community, our frontline fighters, and the resilience of our people.

My message to the Government is very clear:
Concentrate on doing your job well for the next 12 months. And let’s keep everybody safe. A captain can steer the ship, but if there’s anything we’ve learnt in the last few months, it’s that – if the people on the ship are sick and infection is spreading, it can take a long time to find safe harbor. In that scenario, the $48 billion dollar Resilience package would, sadly be, a futile exercise.

For your information I have also attached a list of countries currently who have postponed elections in the light of the situation in the description of this Facebook post, for Singaporeans to look at and consider. I do not make this suggestion lightly.  But since we are looking at a potential life and death situation let us make the right decision and choose life over politics.

 

For country. For people.

 

LATEST: STATEMENT FROM DR TAN CHENG BOCK/GE/COVID/TEO CHEE HEAN

LATEST: STATEMENT FROM DOCTOR TAN CHENG BOCK / GE Statement from Dr Tan Cheng Bock on the latest comments from parliament and the possible considerations for our Singapore. In reference to the statement herewith -below is a list of countries currently who have postponed elections (local, Parliamentary and others) in the light of the situation (COVID-19), for Singaporeans to look at and consider. POSTPONED ELECTIONS DUE TO COVID-19• Municipal and mayoral elections in Vorarlberg, Austria (originally scheduled for 15 March 2020)• Primary elections in Ohio, Georgia, Kentucky and Louisiana, USA (originally scheduled for 17 March 2020). Also, primary elections in Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana and Maryland are postponed (originally scheduled for March-May 2020).• All by-elections and voter registration activities in South Africa (originally planned for March-May 2020)• Second round of local elections in France (originally scheduled for 22 March 2020)• Single Constituency Referendum, Falkland Islands (British Overseas Territory (Originally scheduled for 26 March 2020).• Elections for the community action board, Colombia (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)• Local municipal elections in Chipao, Ayacucho district, Peru (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)• Municipal elections in the Cordovan City of Río Cuarto, Argentina (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)• Municiple in elections in Hassi El Ferid, and Jbeniana , Tunisia (28-29 March 2020) • By-elections for senatorial district in Bayelsa, Imo and Plateau, Nigeria (originally scheduled for March 2020) • Local elections in South Carolina, USA (all elections scheduled for March and April 2020 are postponed)• Local council elections, Maldives (4 April 2020) • Referendum on changes to the constitutional court, Armenia (originally scheduled for 5 April 2020)• Regional elections in Euskadi and Galicia, Spain (originally scheduled for 5 April 2020)• Parliamentary elections in North Macedonia (originally scheduled for 12 April 2020) • Local elections in Kyrgyzstan (originally scheduled for 13 April) • Parliamentary elections in Syria (originally scheduled for 13 April, moved to 20 May 2020)• Second round of parliamentary elections in Iran (originally scheduled for 17 April, moved to 11 September 2020)• Constitutional referendum in Russia (scheduled for 22 April 2020),• Parliamentary elections in Sri Lanka (originally scheduled for 25 April 2020)• Supplementary election for the position of senator in Mato Grosso Brazil (originally scheduled for 26 April 2020)• Constitutional referendum, Chile (originally scheduled for 26 April, moved 25 October 2020)• General elections in Serbia (originally scheduled for 26 April 2020)• Presidential Elections in Northern Cyprus (originally scheduled for 26 April, moved to 11 October 2020)• Local elections in the United Kingdom (originally scheduled for the first week of May 2020, moved to May 2021)• General elections in Bolivia (originally scheduled for 3 May 2020)• Federal vote, Switzerland (originally scheduled for 17 May 2020) and several local (municipal) elections in the cantons of Fribourg, Neuchâtel, Ticino, Luzern and Geneva (originally scheduled for March-May 2020).• A referendum in Italy to reduce the number of seats in parliament (originally scheduled for 29 May 2020), in addition to numerous regional and local elections• Primary elections in Paraguay (originally scheduled for 12 July, moved to 2 August 2020) and Local (Municipal) elections in Paraguay (originally scheduled for 8 November, moved to 29 November 2020)Source: https://www.idea.int/news-media/multimedia-reports/global-overview-covid-19-impact-elections#singapore #psp #progresssingaporeparty #SGunited #DefendSG #covid19 #frontliners #ParliamentSG #SingaporeTogether #youdeservebetter #ForABetterSingapore

Posted by Progress Singapore Party on Friday, March 27, 2020

 

For your information – I also attach a list of countries currently who have postponed elections (local, Parliamentary and others) in the light of the situation, for Singaporeans to look at and consider.

POSTPONED ELECTIONS DUE TO COVID-19

  • Municipal and mayoral elections in Vorarlberg, Austria (originally scheduled for 15 March 2020)
  • Primary elections in Ohio, Georgia, Kentucky and Louisiana, USA (originally scheduled for 17 March 2020). Also, primary elections in Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana and Maryland are postponed (originally scheduled for March-May 2020).
  • All by-elections and voter registration activities in South Africa (originally planned for March-May 2020)
  • Second round of local elections in France (originally scheduled for 22 March 2020)
  • Single Constituency Referendum, Falkland Islands (British Overseas Territory (Originally scheduled for 26 March 2020).
  • Elections for the community action board, Colombia (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)
  • Local municipal elections in Chipao, Ayacucho district, Peru (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)
  • Municipal elections in the Cordovan City of Río Cuarto, Argentina (originally scheduled for 29 March 2020)
  • Municiple in elections in Hassi El Ferid, and Jbeniana , Tunisia (28-29 March 2020)
  • By-elections for senatorial district in Bayelsa, Imo and Plateau, Nigeria (originally scheduled for March 2020)
  • Local elections in South Carolina, USA (all elections scheduled for March and April 2020 are postponed)
  • Local council elections, Maldives (4 April 2020)
  • Referendum on changes to the constitutional court, Armenia (originally scheduled for 5 April 2020)
  • Regional elections in Euskadi and Galicia, Spain (originally scheduled for 5 April 2020)
  • Parliamentary elections in North Macedonia (originally scheduled for 12 April 2020)
  • Local elections in Kyrgyzstan (originally scheduled for 13 April)
  • Parliamentary elections in Syria (originally scheduled for 13 April, moved to 20 May 2020)
  • Second round of parliamentary elections in Iran (originally scheduled for 17 April, moved to 11 September 2020)
  • Constitutional referendum in Russia (scheduled for 22 April 2020),
  • Parliamentary elections in Sri Lanka (originally scheduled for 25 April 2020)
  • Supplementary election for the position of senator in Mato Grosso Brazil (originally scheduled for 26 April 2020)
  • Constitutional referendum, Chile (originally scheduled for 26 April, moved 25 October 2020)
  • General elections in Serbia (originally scheduled for 26 April 2020)
  • Presidential Elections in Northern Cyprus (originally scheduled for 26 April, moved to 11 October 2020)
  • Local elections in the United Kingdom (originally scheduled for the first week of May 2020, moved to May 2021)
  • General elections in Bolivia (originally scheduled for 3 May 2020)
  • Federal vote, Switzerland (originally scheduled for 17 May 2020) and several local (municipal) elections in the cantons of Fribourg, NeuchâtelTicinoLuzern and Geneva (originally scheduled for March-May 2020).
  • A referendum in Italy to reduce the number of seats in parliament (originally scheduled for 29 May 2020), in addition to numerous regional and local elections
  • Primary elections in Paraguay (originally scheduled for 12 July, moved to 2 August 2020) and Local (Municipal) elections in Paraguay (originally scheduled for 8 November, moved to 29 November 2020)

 

 

Source:

https://www.idea.int/news-media/multimedia-reports/global-overview-covid-19-impact-elections