Singapore — Mariam Jaafar, People’s Action Party (PAP) Member of Parliament (MP) of Sembawang Group Representation Constituency (GRC) shared her durian dilemma in a recent Facebook post wherein she discussed her latest house visits at Blk 640.
In response to this, a netizen questioned Ms Jaafar’s use of the term “difficult,” considering the issue at hand revolved around a fruit.
From humble beginnings to prestigious academic opportunities, it seems as though Ms Jaafar is no stranger to the broad spectrum of life experience.
One of the PAP’s fresh candidates in Singapore’s 2020 General Elections (GE), Ms Jaafar has learned the ropes of being an MP from her predecessors like Amrin Amin.
In Mar 2020, Mr Amin posted a shot of Ms Amin and himself doing groundwork around Woodlands. “I have been introducing her to residents and our grassroots,” he wrote. “She’ll hit the ground running, and do her best to serve residents.”
Just a few months after, the PAP held a forum where Singaporeans could get to know the new faces in the PAP’s GE2020 candidate lineup. However, there were those who took Ms Jaafar’s history with a grain of salt, with some finding her “sad story” to be a bit of a ploy “to appeal to the voters emotionally.” However, despite such doubts, Ms Jaafar won a seat in Parliament.
On Saturday (Jul 3), Ms Jaafar shared some snippets of her rounds as an official MP, sharing that this particular outreach was one where she “surprised (her)self.”
“Today I was confronted with a very difficult decision while doing house visits,” she wrote, before discussing her strong dislike for durians. Though the durian fruit has its fans, it is infamous for its strong smell, causing it to be banned in Singaporean public transportation vehicles.
“Growing up, durian season was always a torture for me as the mere smell makes me faint,” shared Ms Jaafar, who disclosed that durians are not permitted in her home. However, as the work of an MP involves putting Singaporeans first, Ms Jaafar ended up making the fruit part of her groundwork on Saturday, as the fruit is now in season.
“Had to hold my breath most of the time,” she wrote, “but it was brilliant to see the delighted smiles of the 80-85% of families we met who said ‘Of course’ when we finished our chat with “Do you like durians?”
As for those who aren’t fans of the fruit, Ms Jaafar wrote, “My sincerest apologies to those who don’t like durian in the homes that got the durians today. Endure ok?”
The MP also expressed her joy over “most” of the residents she visited already having had their Covid-19 vaccines, as well as over the progress of the KA pedestrianization trial.
However, in the midst of praises and comments conveying the gratitude of residents, one Facebook user found Ms Jaafar’s use of the term “difficult decision” with regard to personally handing out a fruit she doesn’t like trivial. “I worry for Singapore with such (an) MP,” wrote Facebook user Khalif. /TISG
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