Why Did Goh Chok Tong Do That To Dr. Seet?

Dr Seet Ai Mee, on then prime minister Goh Chok Tong’s rehashing of the hand-washing incident before the 1991 election.
Extracted from The Straits Times Mar 19 2011
In the aftermath of the electoral defeat, one of Dr Seet’s activists wrote to The Straits Times to clarify that she had seen Dr Seet wash her hands, but it was only after meeting pork sellers. She did not want to be disrespectful to any Muslims she might meet later, the writer explained.

Dr Seet herself did not clarify the issue until close to 20 years later, in 2009, when she was interviewed by Petir, the party’s magazine.

Recalling the incident now, she says her supporters walked away from the rally at which Mr Goh had brought up the incident ‘very upset’.

‘They knew I was going to lose. I don’t know why he did that. He kicked an own goal,’ she says.

While Dr Seet was not the only PAP candidate to lose – three other seats were lost, in the party’s worst showing in recent history – she was the most prominent, being acting minister for community development at the time.

She says her loss stemmed from a myriad of issues such as national unhappiness over the rising cost of living. Bukit Gombak itself had seen three bus routes taken away while fares were increased.

In hindsight, she believes that she was the wrong candidate for the ward, which is made up largely of blue-collar Mandarin- and dialect-speaking folk. She does not speak Mandarin; her second language is Malay.

‘The man fielded after me was the right man,’ she says, referring to veteran backbencher Ang Mong Seng, who wrested the seat from Mr Ling in 1997 with 65 per cent of the vote. He is Chinese-educated and speaks fluent dialect.

But given that Mr Ling had also played on gender prejudice during their contests, would a female Ang Mong Seng have held the ward?

Her verdict: ‘Better than me!’

See another blunder by Goh Chok Tong’s ‘tongue-in-cheek’ post on Tin causes a stir
Posted in Dirty Politics

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My favourite quote today

"I am afraid the cruise ship is over capacity limit, and it used to be a luxury cruise ship. The designer’s claim that it is not sinkable, the name is Titanic. There are not enough life boats, no preparation or provision for failure. Thank you Mr Goh for reminding us." - Low Thia Khiang

"Till today, I am still puzzled by why the PAP cannot fight a fair election without gerrymandering, abusing the GRC system, basically, making sure they enter into a boxing ring with an opponent who is expected to fight them with hands tied behind the back. There is a reason why bullies are not popular in schools. Why not be the school prefect?" - Alvinology

"The question to ask is what lies at the root of the discontent or the disengagement between the G and the people. I am going to stick my neck out and say that it is ministerial salaries. I consider it the root of all evil. Serious. It reduces what should be a social compact into a business contract. " - Bertha Henson