TL;DR – Now let’s get back to more important things.
Two days. That’s how much time of Parliament’s time the #FamiLee saga took up. It’s not as if Parliament didn’t have far more important things to discuss. And all for what?
Does it even matter?
As ESM Goh Chok Tong pointed out, what was supposed to be a private family squabble has been blown out of proportion. It has embroiled all of us. In the process, it “has tarnished the reputation of Singapore and distracted the Government from far more important work”.
“The nub of the issue for us in Parliament is integrity and trust – in the Prime Minister and our system of government. Absent these, Singapore will descend to a third world country. Incorruptibility of our Government is what distinguishes Singapore. The prime minister is central in upholding that incorruptibility. He holds the key levers of state power, entrusted by the people.”
That’s why it’s important to provide an avenue to figure out what’s really going on with this entire saga.
“What then is the agenda of PM’s accusers? Are they whistleblowing in a noble effort to save Singapore, or waging a personal vendetta without any care for the damage done to Singapore? I have kept my ears open. From what Lee Hsien Yang and his wife are freely telling many people, it is clear that their goal is to bring Lee Hsien Loong down as PM, regardless of the huge collateral damage suffered by the Government and Singaporeans.
And most importantly,
“Unsubstantiated accusations have been dished out on Facebook and the media, ad nauseam. Singaporeans are getting sick and tired of all this. We cannot, and will not, allow ourselves to be manipulated as pawns.”
Indeed, we cannot and must not be manipulated as pawns. Singapore and Singaporeans cannot be the collateral damage in this squabble between siblings. There are still many important issues such as the economy, jobs, and national security that the government should be focussing its efforts on.
Has it all been settled?
According to Mr Low Thia Khiang,
“We keep our minds open, we are prepared to give the benefit of the doubt to the PM. For me personally, I will not be convinced until the entire allegation is given a convincing or conclusive airing.”
“This episode, there’s no investigation done, it’s ownself defend ownself in a Parliament with PAP MPs. I wonder, how would you want to convince me, my party and Singaporeans that it’s conclusive and it is something we can all be convinced of entirely?”
Some, like ESM Goh Chok Tong, would consider this to be political sophistry.
Thankfully the end may be in sight
While Lee Hsien Yang and Lee Wei Ling are still unsatisfied with the entire process, there are indications that they might have come to their senses. In their latest Facebook post, they said that they will cease presenting further “evidence” on social media:
“We are not politicians, and do not wish to see Singapore embroiled in a never-ending public argument. For now, we will cease presenting further evidence on social media, provided that we or our father’s wishes are not attacked or misrepresented. Ultimately, it is up to the government, and the people of Singapore, to decide whether and how to hold Lee Hsien Loong to account.
Like DPM Teo, we welcome this development.
Because at the end of the day, whether we demolish the house at 38 Oxley Road is not really that significant.
As Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat highlighted:
“But there is another house that Mr Lee Kuan Yew built lovingly, a greater house than 38 Oxley Road – and that is Singapore. This house, we cannot allow to be demolished.”
Let’s finally move on from this.