There is an article by a Cynical Investor in the TRE titled ‘Wanted President – Must not embarrassed the PAP’. In the article the author quoted the finest thinker in Singapore in Kishore Mahbubani raising the issue of electing a rogue President that would make life difficult for a good govt. I will not discuss why it should not be the other way, ie, a good elected President making life difficult for a rogue govt. In Kishore’s argument, probably the same thinking as the power of the day, this concept of an elected President has outlived its usefulness and must be discarded for good, and be discarded quickly before the next election is due for another elected President.
How could a care taker govt, some said a ‘jaga’ president, that hardly had any power other than the so called power of the second key to open the nation’s reserves, be able to make things difficult for an incumbent govt? A ruling govt could easily get rid of a rogue govt when it is confirmed that a rogue is in the Istana. Luckily we don’t have that experience since 1969. Why is this fear being raised at this time when no rogue president has been elected? How is it possible to elect a rogue president when the criteria to be even qualified to stand for election is so stringent and all holes covered?
But that is not the point. The very thought of removing this Elected Presidency is akin to heresy. Do those people objecting to this concept of an Elected President know whose idea it was? Are they going to tear away such a great idea before his body turn to dust? This thought is simply unfilial and disrespectful. Don’t even think about it. This is a legacy of LKY. Are the people objecting to the Elected Presidency saying or thinking that they are smarter than LKY, that they can throw away his great idea and legacy so callously? It is so easy to create fear, fabricate fear, like the Americans creating fear everywhere to incite wars and sell weapons.
Why don’t they say the current political system could risk the daft electorate voting a rogue govt into power and that the system must also be changed? And if a rogue govt comes into power, it is imaginable that it would put many behind bars. Now, would that be dangerous, more dangerous than a rogue and one man president?
Let’s see who is arrogant and disrespectful enough to destroy the legacy of the father of modern Singapore.