Seelan: In the previous election, despite the fact that not all Singaporeans voted due to the numerous walkovers, the PAP only got '66.6%' of the vote.
If their studies and signs show that in the coming elections their votes from Singaporeans will further decline, then bringing in and promoting new citizens like this Fredric seems like a perfect insidious way to keep the PAP in power.
Source: Temasek Review
YPAP member and P65 blogger Fredric Fanthome who made a spirited defence of the “cooling-off” day proposed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on the p65 blog turned out to be a new citizen from India!
Fredric graduated from the Indian Institute of Management in 2000 and is currently the head of Business Development at Clearing and Payment Services Pte Ltd, a Singapore SME.
In an article he wrote for Contact Singapore, an alliance of the Singapore Economic Development Board and Ministry of Manpower to attract global talent to work, invest and live in Singapore, he described Singapore as a place which “works”.
“The electricity never fails, the transport system works, the drainage system works. You can drink water from the tap without worrying about getting a tummy ache. And the air is clean, except when there are forest fires in Indonesia!”
Fredric did not reveal when he became a Singapore citizen, but it is pretty obvious that he is proud of his adopted country from his writings:
“I did not adapt to Singapore. I did not have to. Singapore was the kind of city I was always looking for……I don’t just live here. I am Singaporean. Singaporean by choice, and proud of it.”
[Source: A City which fits like a Charm from "The Singapore Experience" by Contact Singapore]
Being born and brought up in a developing country like India, it is little wonder that Fredric is in love with Singapore.
However, he must be financially secure to qualify for Singapore citizenship in the first place.
As an outsider not familiar with the political history of Singapore, Mr Fredric may be forgiven for speaking up in the defence of the PAP government who gave him the opportunity to start life afresh in Singapore.
Due to the PAP’s liberal immigration policies, Singapore’s population has hit the 5-million mark this year, out of which 36 per cent are foreigners, up from 14 per cent in 1990.
Of the remaining 64 per cent of the population who are citizens, it is not known how many are new citizens like Mr Fredric.
The PAP has been actively using courting new citizens by organizing events for them and giving them free goodies.
A 10-million dollar Community Integration Fund was launched lately by Minister of Community, Youth and Sports Dr Vivian Balakrishnan to make the new citizens feel welcomed.
(However, he has no money to pay for the Singapore Sports Hub which has been hit be repeated delays)
New citizens and even PRs are recruited to serve as grassroots leaders in the community.
According to Dr Vivian himself, there are now 4,500 new citizens serving in various capacities in grassroots organizations which are under the control of the People’s Association headed by the Prime Minister himself.
New citizens tend to be more supportive and appreciative of the government as epitomized by the example of Mr Fredric.
With more new citizens like Mr Fredric becoming voters in future elections, the PAP can be assured of that their political hegemony will continue for many years to come.