OK, I’m no political pundit. Nor an academic in political science who should be better able to read the political tea leaves than your average auntie. I also don’t move in the circles of great thinkers and insiders in Singapore’s elite political sphere..
But to parody the Wet Wet Wet song, I feel it in my fingers, I feel it in my toes. GE’s all around me, and so the feeling grows; it’s written in the wind; it’s everywhere I go..
.. that the next General Election for Singapore, IMHO, is a lot nearer than all the august big brains — Eugene Tan, Bertha Henson, Kit Wei Ching, Song Seng Wun to name a few — in our midst have been predicting.
“The bet is that it will be late next year or early 2016 to take advantage of the SG50 hype,” said Bertha, while Song thought the PAP would prefer to concentrate on the SG50 festivities for most of 2015.
Then they say there are the contentious and likely amendments to the Broadcasting Act and Town Council Act to get out of the way be4 the next poll.
Ditto the thoughts of some acquaintances of mine who appear to run with the in-politics crowd.
These give all sorts of reasons why GE won’t be before SG is done with its SG50 celebrations, as more goodies have to be distributed first be4 the ballot papers are handed out 🙄
Still, the consensus of the knowledgeable is that the polls will be called a good year before the government’s use by date of January 2017. Their forecasts grow granular around the months of September to December 2015, or at latest January 2016.
I beg to differ, not least because of what Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said at the PAP’s 6oth birthday last Sunday.
He said the next general election will be a “deadly serious” fight between the PAP and the opposition and that “every seat, every GRC, every SMC will be contested. Every seat, every contest will be a national contest, not a local one. Every seat is a general election, not a by-election.”
Wasn’t PM stating the obvious? When had the PAP ever gone into a GE without making it a “deadly serious” fight with the Opposition? When had it not contested “every seat, every GRC, every SMC”? When had it ever treated a national election as anything but a national contest and a general election, not a by-election.”
If it isn’t a GE rally speech, I don’t know what is.
To me it was clear as a bell that the Sec-Gen of the PAP was signalling to the party faithful that GE isn’t months but possibly only weeks away and so better be battle-ready.
As for the feel good effect of SG50 softening even the most hardened of the Singaporean hearts that are against the PAP, I feel PM had better take a cue from what happened to Churchill after he won the war. The epitome of British leadership lost the election immediately afterwards.
Instead if PM chooses to go to the people before SG50 celebs take off, what better way could there be for the PAP to celebrate 50 years of nationhood than for the PAP to collect yet another resounding victory at the polls.
I hope I am right as I can’t see PM and most of his cabinet ministers continuing to rush around for another year as they have been doing this year at myriad functions that seek to thank this, that and the other besides the Pioneer Generation!
If nothing else, some of them will collapse from exhaustion while others because of their packed please-the-people schedules will have no choice but to let their portfolio run on auto pilot.
Not a good state or slate to go into election battle surely?
So shall I bet my Pioneer Generation Card against your SICC card that the January 19 2015 sitting for this Parliament will be its last 😆