Is this guy really a minister?

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Within a period of 3 weeks, Minister of State for Law and Home Affairs has had to defend the government’s stance on 2 issues – the rejection of the Workers’ Party application to hold a cycling event and now the rejection for Professor Douglas Sanders to give a talk here at a public forum.

On both counts, MOS Ho has failed miserably.

To see how the minister (yes, he is actually a minister. Don’t laugh, please) squirms and wriggles and try and explain his government’s stance is, if not for the comical aspect of it, rather painful.

MOS Ho’s most important excuse, it seems, is that of “context”. This is what he said, as reported by channelnewsasia in its report titled, Foreigners will not be allowed to interfere in Singapore‘s domestic affairs”:

“The context is important. It’s not that foreigners cannot make their comments or views known on Singapore policies. No, in fact they all do! But it’s quite different if local activists, in the context of a situation in Singapore where we know that there’s an ongoing debate for some time already on a topic which is divisive, a topic which has caused two sides in particular to expound different points of views, whether we want to invite a foreigner to come here to speak to a Singapore audience.”

“Context is important.” Of course it is! There is a debate on homosexuality going on right now, as the MOS said. (Glad that he’s at least aware of that!) And this is precisely why an expert on the topic is invited to share his views. I mean, DUH!

Underlying MOS Ho’s paranoia is this imagined, or imaginative, scenario of riots, bloodshed, death and destruction if Mr Sanders, a foreigner, was allowed to speak here. You get the sense of this paranoia in MOS Ho’s words.

The same paranoia which he displayed when explaining the rejection for the WP’s cycling application:

“It is an open area where there is potential for breach of peace, public disorder, and unruly behaviour.”

“You may be well behaving, but there may be other people whom you come across when you cycle who may stop you, may want to debate with you and that may attract a crowd, therefore will result in problems the police want to avoid”.

The greatest hypocrisy is that the govt itself, which MOS Ho represents, openly and very publicly invites foreign guests to speak on all kinds of issues – including our politics!

But what is even more ridiculous is that it is the very same government which is opening the door wide to thousands, nah, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of foreigners into our shore! If MOS Ho is so concerned about foreigners speaking about our politics or, as he put it, “interfering in our domestic affairs”, perhaps he should quickly recommend that a new law be put in place which stipulates that all foreigners should not, must not – and never – discuss Singapore’s domestic affairs – ever! – anywhere, be them coffeeshops, work places, clubs, public areas, etc.

Because we do not want to have a riot when a foreigner start asking or talking about homosexuality, CPF changes, our education system, our laws regarding foreigners coming here!

How ridiculous is MOS Ho’s words? Let paraphrase his earlier reply to the WP’s application, and apply it to this rejection of a permit for Douglas Sanders:

“It is a public forum where there is potential for breach of peace, public disorder, and unruly behaviour.”

“You may be well behaving, but there may be other people whom you come across when you are at speaking who may stop you, may want to debate with you and that may attract a crowd, therefore will result in problems the police want to avoid”.

Game, set and match to you, Minister Ho!

I am absolutely dumbfounded that a person who gives out such ridiculous and stupid excuses can be a minister.

Perhaps that is the saddest thing of all – with regards to the MOS’ answers to the 2 issues above.

And we’re paying him one of the highest salaries in the world?

Good grief.

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3 Responses

  1. and you forgot that MOS Ho also said:

    “If you listened very carefully Mr Low, I don’t know whether his hearing aid is with him because he wears one, I said there is a greater potential for law and order (problems).”

  2. […] only way to live with impossibilities in the city of possibilities more strange things are happening in singabore. moral of the story is, no matter how illogical, how confusing, how tacky their response to our […]

  3. now u know why our police is so tired… so tired that they’ve to sleep in the police car, so tired that they’ve to park illegally so that they can walk less to packet lunch. because they’ve got to keep up wif all these latest bans of the month! if gahmen said ban, they must make sure they keep their eyes open!

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