THE ELOQUENT BOY WHO BROKE OUR HEARTS

Dear A.S.S,

As a Singaporean who voted for SDP during GE2011, I am now regretting my decision to support them in Holland-Bukit Timah GRC. I thought I was voting for a credible and competent voice in Dr. Vincent Wijeysingha but I have been sorely disappointed.

During the elections, Dr. Vincent came across as a learned, measured and capable man, a man who could connect with Singaporeans, a man whom we could trust. But events surrounding Dr. Vincent after his SDP departure made me lose my respect for the man I once believed in.

Ever since Vincent left SDP, he got embroiled in multiple controversies, with the recent one involving the Catholic Church. The man that I saw during GE2011, the man who could carry himself well and make well-substantiated arguments seemed to have disappeared completely. I am unsure which is the real Vincent, the man I shook firm hands with or the Vincent of today?

The 1st trouble Vincent got into after leaving SDP was to defame Tan Chuan Jin over the PRC SMRT strike issue. It was disappointing to see such an intelligent man resort to such irresponsible language to get his point across. What happened to being a credible Opposition in Parliament? Does one loses ones sense of responsibility because he is no long standing for elections? Responsible speech should be innate in a People’s representative, not a mask that is put on for convenience.

The second disappointment came when Vincent joined the online mob and cyber-bullied blogger Geraldine Phneah. In gist, he name-called the student blogger a ‘bimbo’ and poked fun of her surname “Phneah” and called her a ‘Popiah’. As a man of a certain public standing, such behaviour is unbecoming of an MP-to-be. Especially when the cyber bullying victim is a 23 yr old girl and him a 44 yr old man. It was shocking to see this other side of Vincent. Imagine an elected MP doing this, I would have called for his resignation pronto.

The third and latest saga involved the Catholic Church. Vincent accused a priest of molesting him in his youth but when asked to lodge a report with the authorities, vehemently refused to. Such accusations are serious and could damage an individual’s future permanently. If Vincent felt strongly enough to reveal this episode, he should do the right thing, report it and give it closure.

By not exposing this ‘despicable’ priest, he is allowing the priest the chance to molest other young boys and becomes complicit in the crime. What happened to the Vincent who stood for justice? The Vincent who wanted to fight for Singaporean’s rights? The Vincent who wanted to safeguard Singaporeans from tyranny? Now is the chance for Vincent to right the wrong and he refused. Now is the chance to put rhetoric into action but he refused.

For these, I am extremely disappointed in Dr. Vincent Wijeysingha. I felt cheated by his words and his behaviour after leaving politics left a bitter taste in my mouth. He has broken my heart, our hearts, the hearts of those Singaporeans who trusted his words. I expected more from my MP-to-be.

Disappointed Bukit Timah Resident

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