Photo of Lee Hsien Loong and Mahathir Mohamad from Google

Worried that Malaysia’s progress may influence Singaporean workers to remove the PAP dictatorship, the Singapore government launched an anti-Mahathir campaign. PAP-paid online pages are now attacking the new Malaysian government alleging that the Malaysia Ministers are corrupted, and that a 10% pay cut would only worsen their corruption.

Screenshot of PAP Facebook page

Earlier in May, the Singapore state media Straits Times published a fake news claiming that the new Malaysian government is in disarray. The Singapore news was slammed by the Malaysian government as untrue.

According to the former dean of Lee Kuan Yew School of Public policy, Singaporean academic Donald Low, it is natural that the PAP government is criticising the new Malaysian government because of the 180 degree narrative in governance:

“Ultimately though, I think the reason many pro-Establishment people want to see the Mahathir government fail is that they seem to be doing everything that our Establishment says cannot or should not be done, eg GST abolition (which I also think is a bad idea; I think it should be reformed not removed), review of repressive laws (like the anti-fake news law that was recently passed, the Printing Presses Act, Sedition Act, etc.), a clearer separation of powers between different branches, etc. In other words, the reason many here would like to see the new Malaysian government fail is that its success would cause them cognitive dissonance and discomfort. So to preserve the coherence and consistency of their worldview, they are willing to put Singapore-Malaysia relations at risk.”

In recent weeks, the Malaysian government took swift actions against former dictator Najib Razak for siphoning state funds, and implemented a number of progressive policies including removing GST, reducing Ministerial salaries by 10%, releasing formerly-restricted public accounts (revealing a 1 trillion RMB debt), relinquishing government control over the mainstream media and releasing political prisoners.

The change however is not welcomed by the Singapore dictatorship, whose Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is the best friend of former Malaysian PM Najib Razak. The Singapore PAP government is now threatened by the possible withdrawal of the High Speed Rail, Johor-Singapore MRT link and a review of the water supply contract and the revival of the high-bridge Causeway idea proposed by Mahathir when he was Prime Minister 15 years ago.

In a state visit by Lee Hsien Loong last week, the Singapore Prime Minister travelled to Mahathir’s residence to meet him and only to be sent out the door within 30 minutes of meeting.