S'pore needs constructive politicians

The motives, means and end of constructive politics must revolve around improving the quality of life for Singaporeans ("Parties clash over what 'constructive politics' means"; last Tuesday).

To do that, we need to build a united, vibrant and progressive society and an economically strong country. That should be the focus and the basis for measuring the success of a political system.

It should target our key priorities, be holistic and catalytic so that it will create a positive and multiplier impact on our citizens, families and communities, now and in the future.

In the final analysis, to have constructive politics, we need to have constructive politicians.

First, they should be exemplary, leaders who set a high standard of honour, ethos and conduct. They are trusted because they earn it.

Second, they should envision the best future for Singapore. They must be brave and strong enough to battle populist tide and go beyond their personal and party's interests to pave the way forward.

Third, as all great governments depend on great leaders and a great team, they must enrol the best talent to lead the country. They may not have to be scholars but they need to have distinctive strengths and expertise to create a brighter future.

Fourth, they should be able to empower citizens with the right structure, systems and processes. They must lay the foundation so that our people can rise to their highest potential and fulfil their passion and aspiration.

Fifth, they should be able to empathise with the man in the street and encourage one and all to build a country that we can be proud of, a country where we can build a treasure trove of happy memories.

Political leaders should have a servant's heart, and seek to serve rather than to be served. They should possess a spirit of humility to value people and their political ideologies.

More than anything else, we need to bring love to the Parliament and to the people of Singapore.

Delivering the non-partisan power of love starts with each and every politician.

Letter by Patrick Liew

This article was first published on June 2, 2014.
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