Saturday, 16 February 2013

Options for stability, will the real Singaporeans come forward in time of need?


Whether it is sustainable population or sustainable economy, political stability is a key to Singapore’s future. But not to get me wrong, I am not talking about the stability of one-party rule and the option of PAP-only government for political stability in Singapore.

In fact, the continued monopoly of the PAP in parliament will be the contributing factor for political instability in Singapore.  The longer it stays in power, the longer it has out of proportion representation in the parliament, the more political unstable it will be.

Judging from the big turnout at Hong Lim Park against the Population White Paper, the time has come that the PAP will lose more parliamentary seats to the oppositions in the coming general elections. But how soon will there be an alternative government, especially when there is a PAP warned freak election?

What happen if it comes sooner than expected? Do we have enough true blue Singaporeans coming forward to serve the alternative government?

Yes, I believe so. 

There are several examples that shows political stability can be achieved if capable individuals can come forward to form the government without objections and interference from the President.  In fact, the President must have the courage and wisdom to make the stability possible like the Options below.

Option 1 Monti Cabinet in time of crisis#1
Monti cabinet was a non-elected government in Italy during the debt and euro crisis in 2012. The ultimate purpose of Monti's appointment was to save Italy from the eurozone sovereign debt crisis. #1

Do we have enough responsible non-elected and non-party men and women in Singapore standing up for Singapore during crisis? Yes.  I think so.  The President of Singapore has to assist and not block the forming of the alternative government.  

Singapore does have “Monti” quality persons in the private and public sectors.  In time of need, they should step forward to serve the country.

Option 2 Chief Judge as caretaker leader#2
<Panagiotis Pikrammenos, chief justice of the council of state, the country’s supreme administrative court, was sworn in as the country’s 184th prime minister by the Orthodox archbishop of Athens in the presence of President Karolos Papoulias, who selected him after party leaders failed to form a coalition government after nine days of wrangling.

Not a recognisable face for most Greeks, Mr Pikrammenos (67) succeeds the technocratic central banker Lucas Papademos to the post and his duties will be strictly limited to the organising of the elections.>#2

This is an unfortunate situation but for stability, a caretaker prime minister is needed for a hung parliament waiting for new election. Again, the President of Singapore must make the right decision to ensure the stability. 

Option 3 Prime Minister of Opposition party #3

<On March 29, 2000, President-elect Chen announced that Mr. Tang had been chosen as premier to head the new cabinet.[1] With his wide-ranging military and overseas assignments, Mr. Tang has extensive administrative experience and an international outlook, which has promoted relations with other countries and will be necessary for the new cabinet.

No longer a KMT member, Mr. Tang confirms the ideal that the new government will not be restricted to persons of any particular political party or ethnic group. Rather, the new government will include the best qualified individuals, who will be able to formulate effective domestic policies, enhance prospects for peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait, and promote the ROC in the international community. During his tenure as premier from the opposition party, Mr. Tang had the highest domestic approval rating over all previous prime ministerial administrations. On October 3, 2000, Mr. Tang resigned from his post amid nuclear power row over Taiwan's energy policy.>#3

This is a case the alternative party is forming the government but can’t find a suitable and respectable prime minister.  In a temporary solution, the ruling party invites an experience opposition leader to be the prime minister of the new government, for example, George Yeo is leaving the PAP to lead the new government.

Option 4 Coalition government#4
<David Cameron formed the Cameron ministry after being invited by Queen Elizabeth II to begin a new government following the resignation of the previous Prime Minister of the United KingdomGordon Brown, on 11 May 2010. It is a coalition government, composed of members of both the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats. The government's Cabinet is made up of sixteen Conservatives and five Liberal Democrats with eight other Conservatives and one other Liberal Democrat attending cabinet but not members.[1] The Cameron Ministry is the first coalition government to have governed the United Kingdom since the Churchill War Ministry of the Second World War.>#4

This may be the worst case scenario.  The PAP is joining an opposition party to form the new government and continues to hold the prime ministership.  Voters may not be happy with this arrangement as they want to see a non-PAP government.  Of course, there can also be the PAP is a junior member in the coalition (due to few MP seats) and the prime ministership goes to the opposition.   Howevr, this is a remote possibility and the PAP may not accept it.

Option 5 Would you send in the army? #5
This is totally unacceptable in a democratic country. However, since the issue had been mentioned before, let see whether this is possible.

In order to do this, the scholar generals must be the ones leading this operation.  I doubt our paper generals have the guy to do this.  If you look at the quality of the generals joining the politics and judge whether they can command and control a platoon or a company of educated soldiers to take over the alternative government, I have great doubt.  

In social media, it is very difficult to convince JC, poly and even graduate NS soldiers to fight for you and die for you without a good reason.  Unless, the paper generals do the unthinkable - inviting foreign troops to Singapore!   

However, it is possible to have uncooperative senior civil servants.

Uncooperative senior civil servants     
I am not that pessimistic about it. In Taiwan, from a KMT President to a DPP President, there were some problems but the government administration had not been badly affected.   In Hong Kong, from British governor to Hong Kong CEO, the administration has not been affected.

Look at our neighbour, Malaysia, two important states changed government in the last election.  In Penang and Selangor states, the performance of the opposition state government is as good as the BN state governments if not better than them.  

If Hong Lim Park protest is an indication that voters are very unhappy with the PAP, then a freak election is possible in Singapore. However, we should not underestimate the potentials of Singaporeans, especially true blue citizens coming forward to serve the nation in time of need!  

#1
 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monti_Cabinet

#2

#3

#4
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cameron_ministry

#5
http://catherinelim.sg/2009/09/03/sir-would-you-send-in-the-army/

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