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PAP grassroots leaders accused of trying to claim credit for WP’s quick action in putting out fire at Aljunied

In light of the entire incident, Workers' Party's Pritam Singh opined, "The screenshots of this post between a Eunos grassroots organisation and a resident today reminded me that the ethos of community service in Singapore through the PA remains in need of a revamp".

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Grassroots leaders affiliated with the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) have been accused of publishing a misleading social media post and of trying to claim credit for the Workers’ Party’s (WP) quick action in putting out a fire in the opposition-held Aljunied ward.

On Sunday evening (28 July), Facebook page Simply Eunos – which is run by PAP grassroots members – shared that a fire erupted at a bin chute at Blk 602 Bedok Reservoir Road.

The page said that “our grassroots leaders Mr Kwek and Ms Alice attended to” the fire after they were alerted by the Singapore Civil Defence Force’s myResponder app but the fire had been put out before the SCDF or the grassroots leaders arrived at the scene.

Facebook user Rosalind Lee revealed that she was shocked to see Simply Eunos’ post on the fire. Revealing that she was the one who first spotted the fire and alerted Aljunied-Hougang Town Council who sent people to put out the fire, Ms Lee said:

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“I was so shocked to see this post! I am the resident at Blk 602 to call Aljunied-Hougang Town Council the moment I saw smoke coming out from my rubbish chute area. Shortly after my call, cleaners were running to douse the fire after they bare-handedly pulled the rubbish bin out on ground level.

“Two police cars & a SCDF vehicle came to check the cause of fire. I was monitoring the activities below my flat and except for a few curious passers-by, I am sure NOBODY attended to this mishap except for the cleaners.”

Accusing the group of publishing a misleading post to give credit to the PAP grassroots leaders, Ms Lee wrote: “Misleading post giving credit to grassroot leaders for the purpose of putting PAP in a good light. Lest everyone who read this forgets. This is a WP ward and their quick action resulted in the fire being put out safely.”

Ms Lee’s revelation drew over fifty likes on Facebook and is the most liked comment on the Facebook thread.

Simply Eunos subsequently responded to Ms Lee and said: “The objective of our posting is to remind residents to be careful against disposing flammable items. Thank you for calling the Town Council to assist.”

The group also edited the original post to note that cleaners the Town Council had deployed put out the fire. Curiously, the group did not mention that the Town Council is Aljunied-Hougang Town Council which is run by the WP:

Simply Eunos’ post and Ms Lee’s comment setting the record straight caught the attention of WP secretary-general and Aljunied Member of Parliament (MP) Pritam Singh, who shared screenshots of the exchange on his own Facebook page.

Revealing that the cleaners who attended to the fire are well, Mr Singh said: “The screenshots of this post between a Eunos grassroots organisation and a resident today reminded me that the ethos of community service in Singapore through the PA remains in need of a revamp.” /TISG

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