According to media reports, Workers Party chief Low Thia Khiang has reiterated that should he be defeated at the forthcoming polls, he will not take up a Non-Constituency MP (NCMP) seat.
First, I hope Mr Low won’t be defeated.
Second, should there be a shock defeat, I hope he will reconsider his stand against the NCMP route.
After all, history has taught us what happened to the two Opposition Party members who were offered the NCMP seats in turn when the scheme first came into operation in 1984.
History has shown us too what happened to those Opposition Party members who accepted the NCMP offer.
Barisan Sosialis chief, the late Dr Lee Siew Choh, would have been buried deeper in Singapore’s political consciousness had he not accepted the NCMP offer in 1988 and like the proverbial “salted fish came back to life.”
A new generation of Singaporeans who knew nothing about the Barisan Sosialis or Dr Lee got to hear its side of the story, or at least as interpreted by him who had merged his party with WP.
More recently, current WP chairman, Ms Sylvia Lim, hasn’t done too badly either by accepting her NCMP seat.
Whether by back door, front door or side door, it is always better for politicians to have the legitimate platform of Parliament to give their views.
Understandably for Mr Low who won his Parliamentary seat four times fair and square, it will be something of a let-down if he has to return for his fifth stint as an NCMP.
But all real heros should be able to accept temporary defeat with the same gritty determination that had given them success in the first place.
So, Mr Low, never say never, should the truly unexpected happen! Never choose to stay in the wilderness especially in today’s world of short attention spans when even one year out of the public eye could make you seem as out-dated as last season’s iPad! 😆