HDB CEO Appointed Electoral Boundaries Committee Member, No Conflict Of Interest?

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As most Singaporeans would know by now, the Electoral Boundaries have appointed committee members who will look at and decide the electorates for the next General Elections. Now, this is a very important job, as they will ultimately decide how the GRC boundaries are drawn, and from there, the PAP and opposition parties will plan their election strategies. Thus, the formation of this committee marks the first step towards the General Elections.

But what most does not know is that one of the committee members appointed is Housing and Development Board (HDB) CEO, Cheong Koon Hean. As her role as the head of HDB, Cheong plays a prominent part in the planning of Singaporean's life. In fact, she can be classed as one of the most important planner in Singapore's landscape. But of course, as a chief planner, she cannot do it herself. She and her team would have to work closely with the Minister of National Development, as well as the Ministry itself, in the planning of housing for Singaporeans. It can thus be safely assumed that Cheong has the ears of the government, much like the government is able to dictate to her what should be done in terms of housing.

And this is also the very same woman who said the value of aging HDB flats will decline over time, instead of being nest eggs for Singaporeans. This comment have drawn the anger of many Singaporeans. Her views on the matter was widely shared by the government as well. So, to have her in the committee to decide the electoral boundaries surely represent a kind of conflict of interest?

Can someone who works very closely with the government and echoes their population views be entirely independent of political bias?

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