With the recent human rights organisations' criticism on Singapore's style of governance that violates human rights and that is not of a liberal democracy, Sinagapore Grand old Minister Mentor, Lee Kuan Yew came out in a robust rebuttal with his guns blazing during the Economic Society of Singapore dialogue in conjunction to it's annual dinner.
Below are some of his rebuttal:
On integrity and honour
" That integrity and the sense of honour and anti-corruption has remained a characteristic of the PAP till today... The way we get things done- you may not like it but you cannot say we are doing it to get rich. In many other countries, people asked: Why is he doing this? To get money. And that ruins it all."
We had next to nothing
"Many countries had achieved Merdeka or whatever. It turned out to be an orgy of looting. So we were quite turned off. We were young, of course. This will ruin us. We've got nothing here: no oil, gas, plantation or timber. All we've got are roads, airport, wharf and infrastructure.
We've to make it work.
Had we inherited a huge oil country, like Angola or Nigeria, we might have gone the other way. But there was no such temptation when we came in. There was $15 million in the kitty. That was what we have in the reserves. Enough for one week's imports."
It's people that matter
"Can this system last? I'm not sure. I've done my job. I passed it on to the next generation. Goh Chok Tong has passed it to the next generation... If you have a competent team on board, honest and dedicated, it will last. If you have bums, then even the best institutions, it will fail. People decide. Not institutions. Institution help."
Well, sound pretty familiar and straight forward here. What Singapore is today is good enough to put Mahathir and Pak Lah to shame. Singapore separated from Malaya in 1963 and just look at them now... light years ahead of our country despite the fact that they are without natural resources. Perhaps, Mahathir would like to clarify why we still slack behind Singapore. One Singapore dollar is worth RM2.40 today. I remembered during my younger days where our Ringgit was on par with Singapore dollar and Brunei dollar. And that wasn't long ago. As far as my memory carries me, our Ringgit started to rot in the mid seventies. That was also the beginning of a new Destructive system of Governance in Malaysia where the system was run by incompetent people due to the propaganda of meritocracy. Even till today, it is still being practised and that should more or less tells us where our future lies with this BN rule. With the global economy heading towards Depression, where would our country be when it strikes? Yes right, we will be on par with Zimbabwe. Wawasan 2020 would turn out to be the opposite. Believe me or them? The choice is yours. And to all Singaporeans, please do not complain too much about your government. As compare to what we have here, you all can consider yourselves much much luckier.