3 highlights from SDP chief Chee Soon Juan's first GE2020 rally

In his first online rally this general election, Singapore Democratic Party (SDP) chief Dr Chee Soon Juan employed a different tack from the usual intensity of his physical rallies. 

Instead, with the aid of a green screen behind him, Chee live-streamed a quieter, mellower affair. So much so that it could be mistaken for an economics lecture — slides were used, charts were thrown up, quotes were flashed and technical terms were defined.

Some choice quotes from his presentation: 


PHOTO: SDP video screengrab

'An unseemly circus'

Possibly in reference to mudslinging and gutter politics, Dr Chee urged people not to fall for such things in an “intelligent election”. 

Don’t get into this trap of turning this election into an unseemly circus of you calling me names and I scolding you back. This is not what elections are about — at least it’s not what an intelligent election is all about. 

Instead, we want to talk about the ideas each party has that will address your worries, your needs, your aspirations. That’s exactly what the SDP is going to do. 

'Menial, back-breaking jobs'

Speaking about how young educated Singaporeans are finding it hard to find jobs, Chee argued that the elderly are having it much worse working in “menial, back-breaking jobs” as a result of the ruling party’s governance. 

Many of these elderly people have to work in menial, back-breaking jobs as road sweepers, pump attendants, cleaners, janitors — you name it. What kind of society have we become? What kind of people have we turned into? What kind of government do we have that treats our elderly in such a shameful manner?

'I'm not tired'

The SDP chief also recounted an anecdote about his walkabout in Bukit Panjang SMC that reminded him of his determination to stand up for the little guy. An inspirational soundtrack swelled in at this point. 

On Sunday when I was doing this mega walkabout at Bukit Batok when I walked the entire estate… it took about five hours. A resident came up to me at the end and asked if I was tired. I must admit it was physically taxing. 

But then I found myself quite ready to carry on. Because even though I was physically exhausted, I was ready to continue the journey. So no, I told them I’m not tired. Not when it comes to standing up for my fellow men and women. Speaking up for those who can’t defend themselves — especially for those who can’t defend themselves. Making a stand for what is right and just.

ilyas@asiaone.com