While I have nothing against The Online Citizen — indeed, a couple of years ago I introduced it to an ex-colleague keen to share his political views — I’m delighted that the Prime Minister’s Office is standing firm that TOC is a political association.
There is nothing non-partisan in any of the content of the TOC website. It’s also an understatement to say it’s anti-PAP most of the time.
It’s such a pity that so many non-Singaporean media reports of TOC being gazetted last week took the slant that the PAP was taking steps “to curb popular news website” ahead of the election.
It is also such a pity that it took the Government so long to move. The delay, if anything, shows that under Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, it is willing to give its critics max leeway.
I had written to the writer of one of those non-Singaporean news reports to protest:
1) “I write to object to the headline used above your article. It’s so reflex action.
2) It’s not so much “curb” as to make TOC as accountable as you and me, if we want to take a high profile political stand and aim to sway and mould opinions of the wider public here and abroad.”
Guess I wasn’t entirely surprised by his reply — which was essentially a “two-finger” gesture couched in words!