Letter to ST Forum from Ms Sylvia Lim

To the ST Forum Editor

Chen Show Mao

I refer to the letter by Dr Ng Eng Hen entitled “Writer’s query on Chen reasonable, says PAP” (19 April).

Voters have every right to scrutinize candidates. However, Dr Ng must know that, even before Chen Show Mao has been formally introduced as a potential WP candidate, he has already been interviewed extensively by various mass media, including Lian He Zao Bao, The Straits Times, Mediacorp TV and most recently, The Business Times. His responses to questions about his decision to return to Singapore, and his motivations for joining the Workers’ Party (WP), have been widely reported. At WP’s formal candidate introduction, there will again be opportunities for the media to pose questions to him.

The fact is that Show Mao’s roots are here. His parents have lived here since 1972. His only sibling and her family are here. He attended our schools, and voluntarily underwent National Service as an infantry officer before he became a citizen. Though he has been abroad due to the nature of his work, he has returned to Singapore typically 4 to 5 times a year, and made contributions to Singapore such as serving on the Advisory Board of the Singapore Management University Law School. He has also said that his wife and children will be joining him in Singapore permanently, and has committed to continuing political work here, regardless of the outcome of the elections.

By again raising the question of Show Mao being outside Singapore for a long time, is the PAP signaling to Singaporeans that the return of a successful Singaporean is not welcome? Or is his loyalty being questioned simply because he is with WP?