Low Thia Khiang was mentioned ‘5’ times in PM Lee’s emotional closing statement on Oxley Road
No other MPs came close in terms of mentions.
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About two weeks ago, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong apologised to Singaporeans and urged all MPs, including the non-PAP MPs, to “examine the issues thoroughly” and question him and his Cabinet colleagues “vigorously” about the Oxley Road saga.
He repeated the call to all MPs in his Ministerial Statement on July 3 — especially PAP MPs since he is lifting the Party Whip — to question him and his Ministers robustly, so that a full airing and accounting of the public issues and allegations can be conducted.
Some would be surprised if one were to tell him or her that it was an opposition MP who out-performed the ruling party MPs in the parliament.
But that was what Workers’ Party (WP) chief Low Thia Khiang did.
In his emotional closing statement on the “alleged abuse of power on 38 Oxley Road” on July 4, PM Lee mentioned Low five times, more than any Ministerial colleagues, PAP MPs or Nominated MPs.
Below is the “name count” of the parliamentarians mentioned in PM’s speech:
Low – 5 times:
1. PM Lee noted that Low spoke about “scattered evidence centred on family displeasure” but Low “has not accused the Government of anything” or “has not given any concrete evidence”.
2. PM Lee said that some MPs asked why he was not taking legal action against his siblings, noting that “Mr Low Thia Khiang advocates my suing my siblings for defamation”.
3. PM Lee also agreed — a rare occasion when both political leaders agree — with Low that Singaporeans should “do whatever it takes to bring the issue to a quick resolution”. However, PM Lee does not agree that going to court will achieve this.
4. PM Lee said that after two days of debate, nobody has stood behind these allegations or offered any evidence, not even opposition MPs. In fact, PM Lee cited Low’s criticism of his siblings for making “vague allegations… based on scattered evidence centred on family displeasure”.
5. In PM Lee’s conclusion to get on with work and move on, one of the two parliamentarians he cited was Low. He said that Low called on everyone to “focus on rallying Singaporeans to be united in facing the challenges, and not be participating in a divisive dispute”.
In fact, Low was mentioned seven times, with his name being mentioned five times.
Two parliamentarians were mentioned twice — Deputy Prime Minister (DPM) Teo Chee Hean and Nominated MP Chia Yong Yong.
DPM Teo – 2 times
PM Lee mentioned DPM Teo in his opening remarks — how Teo has explained the Ministerial Committee, and how we uphold the integrity of the government and his closing remarks — on how Teo reminded us about the national week of mourning when LKY died and how it was an emotional week for everybody.
NMP Chia – 2 times
PM Lee thanked NMP Chia for their wishes for reconciliation within the family and highlighted her in her conclusion about focusing on the challenges Singapore faced as a nation, instead of being distracted by the controversy.
PM Lee also mentioned the names of a few MPs when he addressed some of the questions they posed.
“Ms Cheng Li Hui (Tampines GRC) asked if I deceived my father; if he had believed that the house was gazetted. The simple answer is that I did not deceive my father.”
“Many Members have asked me specific questions on matters after my father died. Ms Sun Xueling (Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC MP) was unsure why I had offered to transfer the house to Dr Lee Wei Ling at $1, but subsequently transferred it to Lee Hsien Yang at market value. Mr Henry Kwek (Nee Soon GRC MP) asked why I had not raised matters on the will during probate and why I am expressing concern now and have put my views in the form of Statutory Declarations.”
“I thank ESM Goh, Ms Chia Yong Yong, and Mr Charles Chong (Punggol East SMC MP) for their wishes for reconciliation within the family.”
“Ms Sylvia Lim (Aljunied GRC) and several of her WP colleagues have raised questions about the propriety of appointing of Mr Lucien Wong as Attorney-General (AG) and Mr Hri Kumar as Deputy Attorney-General (DAG)
Mr Png Eng Huat (Aljunied GRC) read out the litany of allegations by my siblings. But he did not endorse them.”
PAP MPs, WP MP and NMP:
“Mr Pritam Singh (Aljunied GRC), Ms Kuik Shiao-Yin (NMP), Mr Louis Ng (Nee Soon GRC) and Mr Zaqy Mohamad (Choa Chu Kang GRC), suggested a Select Committee, or a Commission of Inquiry. But what is the basis for this?
PM Lee noted that “there are no specifics to the headline charge of abuse of power” and “nobody has stood behind these allegations or offered any evidence after two days of debate.”