Photo of Chan Chun Sing from CNA

Minister of State Chan Chun Sing yesterday (Sep 8) told state media reporters that the ruling party dictatorship can afford the “political price” and backlash from having a racist Malay Presidential election:

“It will be a hard journey to convince people about the need for changes to the Elected Presidency and the Government will pay a political price but it is prepared to.”

The Minister then start praising himself and his government as “good politicians”:

“If we are all good politicians, we won’t and we shouldn’t do it. No good politician would sacrifice his political capital for a problem that may arise in future generations. Most good politicians in the world would try to preserve their political capital for themselves to manage their current problems.”

The former army general then claimed he has got a “very good answer”:

“There are many conspiracy theories out there. But for every conspiracy theory that is out there, I have a very good answer for you. If it has to do with an individual, then there are many other ways. And if it is for political gain, then surely we are not achieving it as you have rightly pointed out.”

Minister Chan Chun Sing then said his “very good answer” is from dictator Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and that the PM’s words will “forever be etched in his mind”:

“We asked ourselves – PM, do we need to do this now? Because we had anticipated it would be a hard journey to convince people and we would pay the political price, at least in the short term. PM Lee’s answer will forever be etched in my mind, and that distinguished a politician from a political leader. He said ‘Yes, we are likely to pay a political price. Yes, we may not have a problem here and now, but what if we have a problem 20 or 30 years from now? Will the fourth, fifth or sixth generation of leaders have the liberty, and the luxury of time and space for them to put in place a system?'”

Minister Chan Chun Sing continued to pour praises for the dictator:

“Not for himself, not for his political capital, but always thinking about what this country needs,” he said. “We are prepared to pay the political price, because we think the future of our country is much more important than any political capital that we may have.”