Under a new directive announced today (Mar 20), the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) will take over the government online services agencies under the Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI) and Ministry of Finance (MOF).
The Government Technology Policy department in MCI, which is in-charge of citizens’ personal data and profiles, and the Digital Government Directorate, which manages SingPass and CPF online access, will now fall under a new agency, called the Smart Nation and Digital Government Office (SNDGO), directly under Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s control, allowing the dictator to have free access without due processes.
The PMO itself is the most powerful non-ministry governing agency that surpass powers of the different ministries, controlling immigration, CPF, elections, police, civil service and now online personal data. The Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau (CPIB) is also under the direct control of dictator Lee Hsien Loong, so the Prime Minister himself can never be charged of corruption.
Under the PMO is also the Elections Department, where Lee Hsien Loong can introduce new election laws without approval from Parliament. In 2011, Lee Hsien Loong introduced a new cooling off day, without the President or Parliament’s debate.
Another powerful agency, formerly under the Ministry of Finance, is the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) which controls the country’s national reserves and CPF retirement funds. Likewise, the dictator is able to manipulate CPF withdrawal age, minimum sum and all matters related to CPF funds without approval.
To ensure all civil servants pledge their loyalty to the Prime Minister, the Public Service Division (PSD) is also under the control of the PMO.
While his father Lee Kuan Yew retired at the age of 66, Lee Hsien Loong is currently 65 years old and will rule surpassing his father’s age. The recent moves to consolidate power further under the PMO suggest that Lee Hsien Loong has no intention to retire, and will likely continue to dictate Singapore using a puppet Prime Minister – who is likely former army general Chan Chun Sing – and a puppet President – who will likely be PAP MP Halimah Yacob.