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Masagos’ Meteoric Rise a Triumph of Meritocracy in Singapore?


Congrats, Mr Masagos, on your new appointment as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office.

By the way, what does a Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office do?

Or a Minister without Portfolio, like what Lim Swee Say used to be, besides Zorro-for a-day? (hey, at least he didn’t do a Catwoman)

I’ve no idea, but it better be something important.

I’ve no idea why too, that the government is playing up the race card when it comes to Mr Masagos appointment.

Aren’t we taught that we’re all Singaporeans, regardless of race, language or religion?

Except for the China guy who faked a Singapore NRIC lah. (No, brother, you’re NOT Singaporean. A card does not make you Singaporean, goondu! )

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How come we don’t hear PM Lee trumpeting, “Another coup for the Chinese, now we’ve a Chinese Minister heading NTUC, in the form of Major-General Chan Chun Sing”?

Oh, since we’re on Chinese, the Chinese people have a  saying: “It doesn’t matter what colour a cat is. As long as it can catch rats, it’s a good cat.”

Don’t know if many Chinese live in Desmond Lee’s ward, but yeah, they seem to have had an issue with rats too.

I’m Chinese.

You can’t just win me over with a Chinese president who looks like some cool western fried chicken colonel from history.

I used to support our national football team because of Fandi Ahmad. (used to because our team now is really hopeless. I’m looking at you, Zainudin. Pull up your stockings lah!)

I think nobody does Mee Siam better than the mak cik at the hawker centre below my flat (don’t know if it’d taste better with hum, but that’d be some REAL fusion food at the hawker level).

And I used to love doing the Indian bhangra dance, that is, until I became older, fatter and less “shake-it-like-you-mean-it”.

Oh yeah, and I absolutely love sitting and watching curvy minahs go by. (sorry cheena girls, airport is airport lah. That’s the flat truth.)

But back to Mr Masagos.

I’ve been trawling the internet and asking people, trying to find out what his key achievements were, such that he got such a key appointment.

Nothing found. But for the most recent accolades, this is what I got from state media agency, the Straits Times:

“Mr Masagos was chief executive officer of Singtel Global Offices before he entered politics in 2006. He was also a respected community leader, chairing Muslim welfare group Perdaus, and starting its humanitarian offshoot Mercy Relief.

After the 2006 General Election, he was appointed Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education, and later for Home Affairs as well. In 2010, he was promoted to Minister of State, and the following year, gave up his Education portfolio for Foreign Affairs.

He became Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Home Affairs in August 2012.”

And from TODAY:

“Pointing out that the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Foreign Affairs are “big ministries, with many issues and areas to cover”, Mr Lee said Mr Masagos, as an additional Second Minister in these two ministries, would be a great help to Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean, who is Home Affairs Minister, and Foreign Affairs Minister K Shanmugam.”

So what has Mr Masagos accomplished, besides starting a charity, and playing round-robin in cabinet?

It’d be good for the government to tell us this.

That way, we can truly respect Mr Masagos for what he has done for Singapore.

The skimpy details only make people like me believe he’s some sort of glorified social worker.

And it’d be good for ALL Singaporeans, regardless of race, language or religion, to know that the race to the top is truly about meritocracy and not just lip service.

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