Tan Chuan-Jin took to social media calling for Singaporeans to stand up for their own country after Mahathir Mohamad said on Tuesday (Jun 21) that Malaysia should claim Singapore and Riau Islands.

Former two-time Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad commented that Singapore was once owned by Johor, and it should be returned to the state and Malaysia.

“We should demand not just that Pedra Branca, or Pulau Batu Puteh, be given back to us, we should also demand Singapore as well as the Riau Islands, as they are Tanah Melayu (Malay land),” said Mahathir at an event in Selangor on Sunday (June 19).

Responding on Facebook, Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin said: “What I find amusing and sad is how some Singaporeans use their anecdotal experience in Malaysia, such as some coffee shop owner offering free drinks, to pull down our own nation and who we are as a people. There are many kind and generous souls here too btw. And the usual folks jumping on board to wax lyrical about how great it is on the other side of the causeway and how poorly we are in comparison. But they are entitled to their views”.

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He added that Singapore is not perfect and could improve, “But I’m proud to be a Singaporean and don’t spend my time running my own country and people down”.

“And of course there are the usual suspects that celebrate their politicians…Oh well”, Mr Tan added.

In his speech, the 96-year-old Mahathir said that Malay land used to be extensive, stretching from the Isthmus of Kra in southern Thailand all the way to the Riau Islands and Singapore, but is currently confined to the Malay Peninsula.

Netizens who commented on Mr Tan’s post were in unanimous agreement. 

Mahathir says Singapore should be returned to Malaysia — Netizens say ‘It’s time for you to retire lah’