PAP MPs flamed for suggesting people could donate their “miserable” SG bonus to charity

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Two ruling party parliamentarians earned the ire of Singaporeans yesterday when they suggested that the government could introduce mechanisms to make it easier for people to donate their SG Bonus to charity.

All Singaporeans aged 21 and above will receive an “hongbao” of $300, $200, and $100 depending on their income, this year. The government will spend a total of 700 million on this one-off “SG bonus”, which comes from the exceptional FY2017 budget surplus of $9.6 billion.

At the Budget debate yesterday, Sembawang GRC MP Lim Wee Kiak suggested that the government could introduce mechanisms that make it more straightforward for people to donate the SG bonus they will receive at the end of this year, if they so wish.

Suggesting that the Government could consider matching each donation dollar-for-dollar to encourage the people to give, Lim said:

“I know of schools who encourage students to donate an ang pow during the Chinese New Year period to the school welfare fund so students from needy families can benefit for the fund.
“In the same spirit of caring and sharing, I like to propose that the Government facilitates giving by providing an easy option for Singaporeans who are keen to donated their SG bonus ang pow to local charities like the Community Chest or President’s Challenge 2018.”

Jalan Besar GRC MP Denise Phua echoed Lim’s sentiments and called on the government to implement such mechanisms before the SG bonus is credited to the people:

“A S$100 SG Bonus hongbao for some could mean an additional dinner out but to another, is cash flow to purchase that milk powder or diapers for the baby or disabled elderly parent.”

Budget 2018: PAP MP Denise Phua on donating SG Bonus

VIDEO: Would you donate your SG Bonus hongbao to charity? People's Action Party MP Denise Phua Lay Peng makes the case in Parliament.

Posted by Channel NewsAsia on Wednesday, 28 February 2018

While these suggestion may have been well-intentioned, they certainly rubbed some Singaporeans the wrong way.

Netizens responding to the MPs’ speeches called on them to lead by example and have their salaries slashed before they ask the people to give the “miserable” SG bonus they will be receiving:

Some netizens also pointed out that it is curious that Lim Wee Kiak is making such a suggestion, given the fact that the politician once defended ministerial pay by linking it with the “dignity” of politicians. He had said in 2011:

“If the annual salary of the Minister of Information, Communication and Arts is only $500,000, it may pose some problems when he discuss policies with media CEOs who earn millions of dollars because they need not listen to the minister’s ideas and proposals. Hence, a reasonable payout will help to maintain a bit of dignity.”

Lim subsequently withdrew his comments, acknowledging that it is “is inappropriate and incorrect” to imply that a minister will lose face is his pay is low: “I withdraw those remarks and apologise for making them. Dignity cannot be and must not be measured purely in monetary terms.”

117 COMMENTS

  1. These mps really one kind. You have a allowance of 16K per month from you role as MP. Then PAP MP also hold several directorship at a go, for example one guy from AMK GRC has 64 directorship. Now they wayang and forgo the $300 to charity ON National TV. I just find them disgusting to the core.

  2. Our gst is gg up by 29% (yes 29% not 2%) and u throw $200 at us machiam we r beggars and now u wan us to donate that $200 back to charity whose accounts we cannot verify (how much goes to beneficiaries and how much to the organisation, etc)? Tell u what… I’ll change that $200 into 10cents coin and throw at u. U go pick it up and donate on my behalf.

  3. Group Think. Mindless Applause. Going forward, you trip over your policies. 1) Give $100- to one earning $1,000,000-. 2) Give $300- to the low earners but tell him : uncle, wait long, long, before December 31. 3) Give $300- to the 21 year old and thank him for his contribution to the nation’s prosperity.

  4. I am truly flabbergasted. What the heck is wrong with these PAP MPs? It is up to people what charities they want to donate to and it is entirely up to them what they want to do with the SG bonus! Why must the government be involved in facilitating charity donations? This is purely condescending, as if Singaporeans cannot even handle such matters on their own. A true blue nanny state which just cannot stop controlling people’s lives.

  5. People around the world are always talking about corporate greed. But for Singapore, what is most disturbing is the sickening governmental greed among MPs, Ministers, the President and their swathe of Yes supporters. This must surely be the worst country in the world for excessive greed and overly paid MPs and government Ministers that haven’t a feckin emotional bone or muscle in their body when statements of such are made. Bleedin shameless so-called Singaporeans telling the citizens what they ought to do. Rant over.

  6. “In the same spirit of caring and sharing, I like to propose that the Government facilitates giving by providing an easy option for MPs who are keen to donated part of their salaries to local charities like the Community Chest or President’s Challenge 2018.”

    Using your own words, how does that sound?

  7. Hope the MP who suggested about the bonus give to charity I willing to do so provide both their salaries also donate .We Singaporean not bigger .MP well paid do nothing but talk Air without date to donate then better resign and be normal Singaporean I want to see how their reaction next time .Parliment already stated .We True Singaporean not begged

  8. It’s pretty much accepted that we aren’t a nation led by example, ideals or higher calling. Our leaders are absolutely bereft of the civic minded stature to suggest, much less expect the rest of the population to sacrifice. It’s a sham by any other name.

  9. They should propose that all well-paid members, including ministers of the ruling party donate a month of their salaries to charity. Why suggest commoners donate meagre SG bonus to charity when they are already struggling to make ends meet? The cost of living is high. People are increasingly concerned about bread and butter issue, but the MPs are proposing to the government to make it easy to contribute their SG bonus to charity. They make themselves a laughing stock.

  10. Everyone please don’t vote these morons in at the next election.Just look at what they are doing.They cannot stay in parliament.Must be chased out and punished every last one of them. Enough is enough.How long more must we put up with their shit ? Don’t we want to take take back the country , after all the country is made of people not government these pricks are trying to prove it otherwise.They are so wrong , so what if there is some bloodshed , if we group together and storm parliament that will be the end of them.

  11. AS I SAID IT MANY TIMES ALREADY, THESE TOP LEADER POSITIONS WITH MILLION DOLLARS SALARIES SUCH AS MM (FOR LKY – DIED),
    ESM (FOR GCT), ADDITIONAL DPM (CURRENTLY 2 DPM IN SG) AND PRESIDENT ARE ALL “ABSOLUTELY REDUNDANT”. ELIMINATE THEM CAN SAVE UP FEW MILLIONS OF DOLLARS ANNUALLY TO HELP THOSE TRULY POOR AND NEEDY PPL.

    SG PRESIDENT SIGNS “EXECUTION ORDERS” TO SEND INMATES TO BE HANGED TO DEATH. UNLIKE PRESIDENTS OF OTHER COUNTRIES LIKE USA, WHO SIGN “EXECUTIVE ORDERS” TO EFFECT POLICIES TO BENEFIT THEIR PEOPLE, THEIR ECONOMY AND THEIR COUNTRIES.

    ALL OTHER COUNTRIES ONLY HV ONE DPM AND ONE VP BUT SG HAS TWO DPM. BUT IN THE PAST, WHEN BOTH LKY AND GCT WERE PM, EACH ALSO HAD ONLY ONE DPM.

    ALL OTHER COUNTRIES EVEN NO. 1 WORLD ECONOMY LIKE USA ONLY HV ONE PRESIDENT AND ONE VP EQUIVALENT TO ONE PM AND ONE DPM.

    BUT SG, AS COMPARED USA, WHERE DO SG ECONOMY STANDS? AND YET SG HAS SO MANY TOP LEVEL LEADERS TO HELM ONE TINY DOT COUNTRY WITH SMALL ECONOMY AND SMALL POPULATION. RIDICULOUS!!

    I TRULY QUESTIONED LKY WHICH PARLIAMENTARY STRUCTURE IN THE WORLD IS THE SAME AS SINGAPORE?

    I TOLD LKY THAT BY CREATING THOSE EXTRA POSITIONS WAS ALREADY SENDING SIGNALS TO THE WORLD THAT PAP UNDER LHL’S LEADERSHIP IS
    NO LONGER A CREDIBLE PARTY AT ALL.

  12. I suggested that the government could introduce mechanisms that make it more straightforward for MPs to donate their MP allowance they receive monthly, if they so wish.

    The Government could consider matching each donation dollar-for-dollar to encourage the MPs to give,
    Why didnt he say that

  13. Why we need a president at all? If really need to have a president for “ceremonial” purposes, then it should be a president that has the ability that able to carry the weight to be one, one that does not need to be paid, but by own virtue, able to carry the weight of a ceremonial president, shouldn’t it be like this instead??? Why does a president need to make a living as a president? Does this even make any sense??? And Singaporeans actually agree to this???