Blogger-activist Sudhir calls out WP and PAP for past xenophobia but leaves out PSPMay 21, 2021 | 🚀 Fathership
Minister of Law and Home Affairs K. Shanmugam last week (May 11) called for "responsible" opposition parties and all members of the House to condem racist behaviour in Singapore.
Shanmugam made his comments following an alleged xenophobic and race-based attack against a Singaporean Indian lady by a Chinese man at Choa Chu Kang stadium a week prior.
Blogger-activist Sudhir Vadaketh calls out Workers' Party and Singaporean First Party
Agreeing with Shanmugam, blogger-activist Sudhir Vadaketh recounted how in 2015, the Workers' Party (WP) manifesto at the time was leaning towards xenophobia.
Sudhir also called out the now-defunct Singaporean First Party headed by former civil servant Tan Jee Say and accused the party of being far-right.
Sudhir's harshest words were reserved for the ruling People's Action Party (PAP) which he observed to have "stagnated" in progressing towards a more tolerant society. He blamed the PAP for being culpable in the rising racial and xenophobic tensions in Singapore.
To address racism, Sudhir suggested the following:
- Initiate an open dialogue on Lee Kuan Yew’s racist comments and policies.
- Publicly condemn the racist words and behaviours of high-profile PAP supporters.
- Initiate an open dialogue and introspection on government actions, words and behaviours that may be (unintentionally) racially offensive, problematic or dangerous.
He ended his blog post by reiterating that the PAP should address its own perceived "racist strands and policies" before calling out others.
This is where it becomes ironic.
Tan Cheng Bock from Progress Singapore Party conveniently left out of Sudhir's criticisms
Not surprisingly, Sudhir Vadaketh stops short of highlighting Progress Singapore Party founder Tan Cheng Bock past xenophobic remarks in 2004 where Tan alluded to foreign migrant workers as being problematic and unhygienic.
Tan had spoken against the Government plans at the time to house foreign workers in Singapore's public estates. He felt that dormitories should be built "on reserved land, a distance away from public housing" so they can be "better controlled and also there will be less disturbance."
Here was what Tan said:
“Housing foreign workers in our public estates has many problems. I had my fair share when foreign workers were occupying a few blocks of flats in Teban Gardens. Because of different social upbringing, the standards of hygiene and environmental care were poor, these led to unsightly flats within well-kept surrounding blocks. Moreover, these foreign workers tend to be noisy and boisterous. They also engage in activities not worthy of mention in this Chamber.
I, therefore, would like the Ministry to come up with some other solutions to ease this problem. One way would be to build dormitories on reserved land, a distance away from public housing estates. Another would be to house them in dormitories in industrial estates so that they can be better controlled and also there will be less disturbance. Perhaps, those big companies employing large numbers of foreign workers on a long-term basis should be allowed and encouraged to build such dormitories.”
Sudhir's shielding of PSP comes on the back of his close relationship with Lee Hsien Yang's son Li Huanwu who he described as his "whisky kaki".
Lee is a member of PSP and a good friend of Tan Cheng Bock.
Pictured: Li Huanwu and husband (in army uniform) at a home gathering with Sudhir Vadaketh
Pictured: Lee Hsien Yang and Sudhir Vadaketh at a dinnerIt is therefore too much to expect Sudhir to bite the hand that feeds him - at least according to online vigilante group SMRT Feedback.
Sudhir was recently in the radar of SMRT Feedback who accused him on Facebook of being a pseudo-intellectual. The group also implied he was bankrolled by Lee Hsien Yang to dish out anti-establishment narratives - a charge that Sudhir denied.