Nowhere in the democratic world can we see the preposterous spectacle of a president elected by 35 per cent of the electorate. The proper and democratic president should have been decided by a run-off election when it was obvious that there was no convincing elected candidate with over 50 per cent of the vote at the last presidential election. Dr. Tony Tan was backed by the funky PAP leadership who feared that a run-off would have resulted in an overwhelming victory by the more popular Dr. Tan Cheng Bok who, the PAP leaders may find to their dismay, may not be as easily manipulated as the more pliable Dr. Tony Tan. So a 35 per cent minority president was foisted on an unsuspecting electorate who were incredibly caught unaware and had unfortunately missed the chance to register a strong protest. Of course, it did not include the 35 per cent who voted for Dr. Tony Tan. So we are now faced with the ridiculous spectacle of a comical minority President representing Singapore on the world stage.
By a quirky stroke of luck there is no dearth of gullible and well-meaning countries ready to show some semblance of civility and diplomacy to the clownish minority President in order not to belittle the self-conscious and conceited Singapore Government. The British Government feels that it is their turn now to invite a domestically undistinguished minority President to a State Visit to the United Kingdom, the first Singapore president to be so invited. Not to be outdone by other countries which had hosted the President previously, the British Government seems to have gone overboard in its pomp and pageantry, befitting that of a past colonial master, accorded to the minority President from Singapore. Quite rightly as the magnificent host, the British Monarch displayed consummate splendour in conferring the highest palace honour to an undistinguished minority President. Never in his wildest dream has Dr. Tony Tan experienced such a high degree of pomp and pageantry from a British Queen. Of course this highly exquisite Royal reception of Singapore’s minority President is a boon to the reputation of the unimpressive PAP leadership in the world arena.
As expected, the slavish mainstream media, especially the Straits Times, went to town in highlighting the pomp and pageantry accorded to the minority President in his State Visit to the United Kingdom. To what extent has the Singapore electorate, excluding the 35 per cent pro-Dr. Tony Tan’s voters, given more than a cursory attention to the minority President’s State Visit to the United Kingdom is an interesting point to show the acceptance and popularity of Dr. Tony Tan by this segment of the electorate. He can merrily go on his foreign escapades but he can, if he has any humility, only claim to represent 35 per cent of Singaporeans. Why the British Government chooses at this time to accord a State Visit to a Singapore minority President is unfathomable. Our late President Ong Teng Cheong could have done Singapore proud if the British Government had the good sense and judgement to have invited him then. He was a properly elected President with a convincing majority and was popularly acknowledged as the People’s President.
This commentary was first published on Singapore Recalcitrant.
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